Grubhub, Yandex bringing robot food delivery to University of Arizona

By Mike Sunnucks | Rose Law Group Reporter

Mobile food ordering platform Grubhub is launching self-driving robots (also called rovers) to deliver food at the University of Arizona.

Grubhub will use robotic vehicles developed by Yandex Self-Driving Group to deliver food on the 35,000-student UA campus in Tucson.

UA will be the second college campus where Grubhub is using robot delivery systems joining Ohio State University. The service was rolled out in Columbus, Ohio this semester.

“Yandex’s third-generation robots autonomously navigate pavements, campus crosswalks and pedestrian areas at speeds between 3 to 5 miles per hour during daytime and after dark and in various weather conditions, including rain, wind and heat,” Grubhub said in a release Wednesday.

“We’ve been working with the University of Arizona’s dining team on efforts that drive the dining experience forward for the last eight years – from rolling out on-campus pickup and delivery to smart food lockers and our Ultimate ordering technology,” said Travis Price, senior manager, strategic partnerships at Grubhub. “The deployment of this robot delivery technology is an exciting way we’re providing innovative solutions to our partners, and we look forward to continuing to support the university’s dining operations.”

Grubhub is based in Chicago and is looking to bring the rovers to other college campuses.

“Our ongoing partnership with Grubhub, and now Yandex, continues to strengthen and bring cool new innovation to our campus,” said Todd Millay, executive director of Arizona Student Unions. “We’re lucky to be the second school in the nation to launch with Grubhub’s new robot delivery service, and we can’t wait for our students to enjoy the convenience of this amazing technology.”

Yandex Self-Driving Group is a robotics offshoot of Russian internet company Yandex N.V.

“We are excited to see just how quickly autonomous delivery robots are becoming an essential part of campus life,” said Peter Szelei, business development executive at Yandex SDG. Our robots are already delivering thousands of orders every week on college campuses — simplifying the daily lives of students, professors and anyone spending time on college campuses. The University of Arizona campus will feature our newly launched third-generation robots, and we hope the students will enjoy them.”

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