On-demand drone delivery service, Wing is celebrating two years of servicing customers in Logan, Queensland, with a population of 300,000 located around 45km south of Brisbane. Since 2019, Logan residents have ordered and received more than 50,000 deliveries directly to their homes by Wing delivery drones.

“Logan is one of the fastest growing cities in Australia, and this year we’ve invested to expand to serve 19 suburbs with a combined population of more than 110,000 people,” Wing head of policy and community affairs, Jesse Suskin told Retailbiz in a recent interview.

“Logan residents have responded, ordering thousands of drone deliveries on-demand each week, and the city has laid a strong claim to be the drone delivery capital of the world.”

Globally, Wing has surpassed 100,000 customer deliveries with over 50,000 of those delivered to Logan customers in the first eight months of 2021 alone, and during lockdown in the first week of August, Logan residents ordered almost 4,500 deliveries.

“Drone delivery has enabled our customers in Logan to start their days with more than 10,000 cups of fresh barista-made coffee in the last year. As kids transitioned to remote-learning, parents have ordered more than 1,700 snack packs to keep break times interesting, and more than 1,200 hot chooks have been delivered just in time for dinner.”

Wing head of policy and community affairs, Jesse Suskin.

Why Logan?

Early trials in Australia revealed that many families with young children and those who might experience mobility issues use the Wing service, with many enjoying the ease and convenience of delivery without having to get into their cars and drive to the shops.

“We chose Logan as a location for ongoing operations due to the convenience we could provide to those who live in the Logan community, and the potential benefits of easing traffic congestion in one of Australia’s fastest growing communities. There are a lot of cities that look like Logan across Australia, so we think that if we can get in right in Logan, as we have, we’ll be successful in other places as well,” Suskin said.

Wing’s operation in Queensland is the largest residential drone delivery service in the world, available daily to 19 suburbs with a population of more than 110,000 people.

“What’s most exciting about the growth of our operations, particularly in Logan, is that there are hundreds of cities around the world of similar size such as New Orleans, US, Manchester, England or Florence, Italy. The success in Logan implies a not-too-distant future in which similar high-volume drone delivery services could be replicated in similar cities, and even larger metro areas.”

How does the service work?

Wing drones are custom-designed to deliver packages safely, reliably, and quickly – with a record delivery time of 2 minutes and 47 seconds to date, from order to delivery at the customer’s house.

With a wingspan of about 1.5 metres and weight of 5 kilograms, the drones can carry packages around 1.5 kilograms in weight, at speeds of more than 100 kilometres per hour.

“Once a customer submits an order via the Wing drone delivery app our drone flies to pick up the package at our delivery facility. The drone then climbs to a cruise height of about 45 metres above ground on average, flying to the designated delivery destination in several minutes,” Suskin explained.

Customers in Logan have ordered more than 10,000 cups of fresh barista-made coffee in the last year.

“Once at the customer destination, the drone slows down, hovers, descends to a delivery height of 7 metres above ground, and then lowers the tether and automatically releases the package in the desired delivery area. There is no need to unclip or assist with the delivery of the package. The drone then climbs back to cruise height and returns to the Wing site.”

When asked about future expansion plans, Suskin acknowledged that drone delivery is highly regulated, and before expanding to new areas, Wing must work closely with Commonwealth regulators, state policymakers, and local governments.

“We don’t have expansion plans to announce right now but we’re always open to conversations with Australian communities who could benefit from drone delivery. Given the growth we’ve already seen, and positive feedback received from Queensland customers who see the value of contactless, on-demand drone delivery, we’re looking forward to bringing our service and technology to more communities across Australia.”

If a business owner in Logan or Canberra is interested in participating in the service, they can get in touch with Wing at wing.com/contact/merchant.

Wing is a subsidiary of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, working with local businesses to deliver food, goods, and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals via drone.