Drone deliveries coming to Finland in early 2019

The project will be free at first during a test phase, but expect to pay after that if the service takes off.

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Wing drone delivery service in action in Australia / Credit: Wing

Drone deliveries are no longer the stuff of science fiction, they’re about to become reality in the capital city region.

Wing, which is owned by Google’s parent company Alphabet, has announced it’s going to start some drone flights, dropping off various items, in spring next year.

“Finns are internationally renowned for being early-adopters of new technologies, and we’re looking forward to working with the community and local businesses to find the best way to implement our services in the Helsinki area” the company says.

For the past 18 months Wing has been testing capabilities in Australia, where they’ve flown 55,000 trips delivering items from local businesses including over-the-counter medicines like painkillers, food and drinks and some household items too.

Customers would be able to order something on an app on their phones, then have it delivered a few minutes later according to the company.

Wing says drone deliveries are good for the environment, with a much lower carbon footprint than traditional deliveries, thanks to the clean electric power of the actual drones.

This Helsinki drone project will run for a trial period and be free of charge at first. The company has had to coordinate with Finnish authorities about the flight rules and where any no-fly restrictions might be in place.