Wing is expanding drone deliveries to a pair of Texas-area Walmart Superstores later this year. The Alphabet-owned drone firm says the two offerings will cover a combined 60,000 homes in the greater Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.
The first location is 8555 Preston Road in Frisco, Texas, a suburb Wing has served since 2021. That spot is expected to get up and running “in coming weeks.” The Alphabet X graduate already manages 11 drone hubs in the region. An additional Supercenter location will go online before the end of year.
Both spots will be available to customers within a roughly six-mile radius, and Wing promises 30-minute delivery between the hours of 10:30 AM to 6:30 PM (every day but Wednesday, for some reason). Deliveries include the standard Walmart fare, like groceries and over-the-counter meds (presumably you don’t want prescriptions flying around up there).
Image Credits: Brian Heater
“This is a major milestone for Wing,” says Wing CFO Shannon Nash, “as we continue down our path toward building capabilities to support some of the most significant delivery operations in the world. Our technology is designed to complement existing delivery offerings, making overall systems more efficient and able to meet real customer needs.”
A potential nationwide Wing/Walmart partnership would be a huge win for both parties that comes at a time when Amazon’s drone efforts reportedly continue to struggle. Of course, scaling the network to that size is going to take a lot of effort -- and clearance of local and federal airspace regulation. Don’t count those chickens just yet.
“Working with Wing directly aligns with our passion for finding innovative and eco-friendly last-mile delivery solutions to get customers the items they want, when they want them,” says Walmart SVP, Prathibha Rajashekhar. “With drones that can fly beyond visual line of sight, we’re able to unlock on-demand delivery for customers living within an approximate six-mile range of the stores that offer the service.”
The drones travel at around 65 MPH. Wing says they can handle cargo as delicate as chicken eggs without incident. When I visited the company’s offices earlier this year, I asked them to deliver a bottle of Coke. To Wing’s credit, the box was opened, the bottle removed and opened without incident.