TEA BAGS BY THE BILLIONS
For three days in February, China’s largest Internet marketplace—think ebay on steroids—used drones in an effort “to bring unique and innovative shopping experiences” to its customers.
The Alibaba Group delivered boxes of ginger tea to 450 shoppers in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou, each of whom paid roughly $8 for the experience. The company isn’t sharing much information, but apparently the remote-controlled drones were flown to certain buildings, and human couriers unloaded the tea and delivered it to consumers.
It’s not the first drone delivery in China; in 2013, Incake bakery in Shanghai used remote-controlled drones to make five deliveries of its pricey $325 confections. “The cakes are intended for couples celebrating special moments,” said the
. The bakery’s claim that a drone delivery is
Shanghai Daily more environmentally friendly seemed a bit absurd, as a drone operator followed each quadcopter in a car.