Self-driving car startup AutoX launches the first-ever autonomous grocery delivery in Bay Area
After two years of hard work and innovation, the self-driving car startup AutoX, is finally launching a grocery delivery and mobile store pilot in San Jose, California. Arriving in time for the autumn harvest produce season, the new amenity will be available to customers in geo-fenced areas throughout the city. With the new launch, Bay Area residents can now order and receive fresh produce and other goods, which will be delivered by AutoX’s self-driving cars. AutoX’s grocery delivery and mobile store pilot will roll out in two phases: the first pilot is in San Jose, with phase two expanding the pilot west to Mountain View and Palo Alto, with more delivery partners joining soon.
AutoX is creating a full-stack A.I. software solution for self-driving vehicles to achieve level 5 full autonomy. The company started in 2016, founded by Jianxiong Xiao, known as “Professor X”. When Dr. Xiao (Professor X) founded AutoX, he had a mission for the company to democratize autonomy (refer to our First Blog post, and the MIT TR35 speech given by Professor X). His vision was to have self-driving car technology service people’s daily lives. At AutoX, we believe last mile delivery is likely going to be one of the first large-scale self-driving car applications. Specifically, last mile delivery for groceries and food will be more convenient and affordable when enabled by autonomous driving technology. The traditional way of grocery shopping is tedious. We are bringing a new way of grocery shopping to free people to enjoy the best part — receiving the goods, and enjoying our purchases.
AutoX is redefining the future of Location Based Services and bringing self-driving cars technologies to everyday lives. Its mission is to provide reliable, safe, and affordable autonomous delivery power to make everyday lives more convenient.
“We’re very excited to launch the first autonomous grocery delivery and mobile store service in the heart of Silicon Valley with self-driving vehicles on the road,” said AutoX Founder and CEO Jianxiong Xiao, who has a PhD from MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab and is a pioneer in the research field of 3D computer vision and robotics. “It’s the first step of our mission to democratize autonomy, and is a testament to our cutting edge A.I. and all its potential capabilities. We believe self-driving car technologies will fundamentally change people’s daily lives for the better.”
AutoX’s featured partner on fresh produce is e-commerce company GrubMarket.com, which is one of the key partners fulfilling the grocery orders. GrubMarket sources organic and healthy food directly from producers and offers fresh food at the lowest cost to popular retail stores such as Whole Foods, Blue Apron, Hello Fresh and Chipotle. With AutoX’s affordable self-driving car delivery service, the same high quality groceries can be offered directly to individual consumers at the same price, but with better delivery and shopping experiences.
After downloading the AutoX app, users can browse and order items including fresh perishables, vegetables, fruits, etc. There is no need to worry about receiving wilted lettuce or less-than-fresh fruit, because groceries will be well preserved in a temperature-controlled environment throughout their driverless ride over.
“AutoX is a true innovator in the autonomous driving industry, as evidenced by their pioneering self-driving delivery vehicle,” says GrubMarket CEO Mike Xu. “We are thrilled to combine the fresh and affordable grocery experience of GrubMarket with the ingenuity and delivery capabilities of AutoX. We look forward to providing our customers with even more convenient delivery options.”
The coolest part? When the AutoX car arrives, the window rolls down with AutoX’s selections for customers to pick.
“We are enabling two shopping experiences with self-driving cars,” explains AutoX COO Jewel Li. “You can order goods from an app and get them delivered by a self-driving vehicle. Or, our self-driving car brings a shelf of goods to you, and you can select and purchase onsite in front of your house.”
What sets AutoX’s system apart from the L4 autonomous driving crowd is its emphasis on inexpensive but high-resolution cameras as the primary sensor, rather than expensive LiDAR laser arrays and other costly sensors. AutoX’s high resolution camera sensing enables the AI to safely detect small objects such as kids and pets, and see farther ahead for longer distance compared to other autonomous driving technologies that heavily rely on LiDAR.
“Highest safety and lowest cost, this is where our key technology lies,” says Jianxiong. With a diverse team of research minds from the likes of MIT, Stanford, CMU, Berkeley, along with engineering talent from Google, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Ford, AutoX is determined to make a mark on the autonomous driving industry.