Watch: UK claims Amazon's first ever drone delivery

 
Lynsey Barber
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Amazon Prime Air drone delivery first
It's take-off for Prime Air (Source: Amazon)

Amazon's dream of drone deliveries just became a reality - and it happened first in the UK.

A fully automated drone with no human input delivered a package to a customer in Cambridgeshire, taking just 13 minutes to get it from depot to door.

The first flight of its kind is a major step forward for the online giant's Prime Air service, for which testing has also been taking place in the US, Austria and Israel.

But it's the UK which can lay claim to hosting the first private customer trials.

Watch the first Amazon Prime Air drone delivery

The trials will continue as it works to improve the service in terms of safety and reliability, but eventually the retailer hopes to roll it out as an option for all customers.

You won't be able to get that pile of books from your wish list just yet, however - the drones can only carry up to five pounds of weight - in the trial that's an Amazon Fire and a bag of popcorn.

The concept, promising delivery within a 30 minute time frame - has been in the works for three years, with boss Jeff Bezos predicting four or five years until it gets underway back in 2013. It looks like that's on track.

And the UK is now at the heart of development for the company as regulators in the US took a more cautious stance on drones than the UK. Last year he praised the UK as "a very encouraging example of good regulation" for drones.

"We like what we see there," he added.

It comes as the company opened the door on its first data centre in the UK for its Amazon Web Services cloud business. City A.M. exclusively revealed the tech giant was committed to the data centre plans back in July despite the vote for Brexit.

Drones are expected to become a multibillion pound industry in the coming years - from transporting goods to servicing ships and filming TV shows.

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