Amazon Prime Air to use unmanned flying drones for package delivery (VIDEO)

By Alexandra Burlacu | Dec 02, 2013 09:27 AM EST

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Amazon is currently testing a delivery service that employs drones to deliver packages within 30 minutes of placing an order.

Unmanned aircraft has stirred quite a bit of controversy in the recent past, but Amazon wants to take advantage of this technology and put it to commercial use.

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Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is famous for his bold innovations and now he revealed big plans for his company. In an interview on 60 Minutes on Sunday night, Dec. 1, Bezos revealed that Amazon is aiming to use drones for product delivery.

Called Amazon Prime Air, the service would use "octocopter" drones to deliver packages roughly the size of a shoebox. The service could become reality within five years, depending on the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), as it still requires more testing and clearance, Bezos told Charlie Rose during the interview.

"We're excited to share Prime Air - something the team has been working on in our next generation R&D lab," Amazon touts in a FaQ page on its website. "The goal of this new delivery system is to get packages into customers' hands in 30 minutes or less using unmanned aerial vehicles."

"Putting Prime Air into commercial use will take some number of years as we advance the technology and wait for the necessary FAA rules and regulations."

A video demonstrating how the service would work is already available on YouTube, showing the entire process from taking the package from the warehouse and delivering it on the front steps of the customer's house. The goal is to facilitate delivery and reduce the amount of time customers have to wait for their order. With this program, the drone would deliver orders roughly half an hour after the customer hits the "Buy" button on Amazon's website.

"One day, Prime Air vehicles will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today," Amazon further noted in its FaQ page, while also highlighting that the company takes security concerns seriously. "Our vehicles will be built with multiple redundancies and designed to commercial aviation standards."

If you missed Jeff Bezos' intriguing interview, you can watch the whole thing on the 60 minutes website. To see the concept in action, check out the video below.

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