Starship Technologies launches robot delivery service at South Dakota State University

Starship Technologies has rolled out its robot food delivery service on the campus of South Dakota State University. SDSU becomes the first campus in the state of South Dakota to implement robot food delivery service.

Starship’s fleet of 30 autonomous, on-demand robots will deliver from three campus eateries to start: Grille Works, Papa Johns and Starbucks. Additional locations will be added soon.

The school’s nearly 14,000 students and faculty can now use the Starship Food Delivery app (iOS and Android) to order food and drinks from local retailers to be delivered anywhere on campus within minutes. The service works in conjunction with the student meal plan.

Doug Wermedal, associate vice president for student affairs at SDSU, says: “The one thing we have learned in recent years is that students and faculty like flexibility in their dining options.

“The ability to have something delivered to various locations throughout campus and the community will be impactful to our students and employees as they continue to manage busy and demanding schedules. We are excited about this partnership, the robotics technology and the student employment opportunities Starship will bring to our campus.”

Starship is already providing services to campuses across the country. including Arizona State University, Purdue University, George Mason University, and Northern Arizona University. Since launch, all campuses have increased the number of robots, dining options and hours of operation to meet the high demand for the service.

To get started, users open the Starship Deliveries app, choose from a range of their favorite food or drink items, then drop a pin where they want their delivery to be sent.

They can then watch as the robot makes its journey to them, via an interactive map. Once the robot arrives, they receive an alert, and can then meet and unlock it through the app.

The delivery usually takes just a matter of minutes, depending on the menu items ordered and the distance the robot must travel. Each robot can carry up to 20 lbs – the equivalent of about three shopping bags of goods.

Ryan Tuohy, SVP of business development and sales at Starship Technologies, says: “We’re excited to make our South Dakota debut at SDSU.

“The winters can be tough here so we know the students, faculty and staff will appreciate the robots delivering their food and drink orders. We look forward to providing this convenient service and becoming a part of the campus community.”

Starship Technologies operates commercially on a daily basis around the world. Its zero-emission robots have made more than 2 million autonomous deliveries, traveled millions of miles and make more than 90,000 road crossings every day.

The robots use a combination of sophisticated machine learning, artificial intelligence and sensors to travel on sidewalks and navigate around obstacles. The computer vision-based navigation helps the robots to map their environment to the nearest inch.

The robots can cross streets, climb curbs, travel at night and operate in both rain and snow. A team of humans can also monitor their progress remotely and can take control at a moment’s notice.

Starship hires a team of student works on every campus, giving them real-world experience in AI and the future of transportation.

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