Russian drone delivery startup Copter Express has signed to use the what3words three-word addressing platform. The new partnership will mean that the drone delivery company’s customers will be able to locate and specify their pick-up points using their what3words addresses.
The Copter Express sign-up is the second drone-related agreement that the addressing company has made this year. In July, Altavian announced that it would be using what3words to route its drones. Altavian’s drones are mainly used for survey work- but the company has also recently launched a delivery drone.
Both what3words and Copter Express attracted a lot of retailer interest at the recent Deliver One conference in Luxembourg.
Tom Blaksley, partnerships manager for what3words, told eDelivery.net: “Three word addressing brings additional precision to places with postcodes and zip codes. Some countries don’t have postcodes at all but what3words instantly gives everyone an address. For UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] deliveries, what3words allows non-technical people to give an exact delivery location for their garden or balcony and avoids the ambiguity of street addresses, postcodes, or mistakes in communicating latitude and longitude coordinates.”
He said that although an education process was required before commercial enterprises and consumers fully bought into the system, the company is confident it will gain traction in the global ecommerce market, and with international postal services. Mongol Post, Mongolia’s national postal delivery service, has adopted the addressing platform what3words for postal deliveries to customers across the country.
By working with cutting edge drone companies, it’s clear the UK start up has its sights on helping service a new generation of autonomous delivery.
What is the what3words address system?
what3words is a global address system which divides up the world into a grid of 57 trillion 3mx3m squares, where each square has a unique pre-assigned 3-word address. The company’s geocoder turns geographic coordinates into these 3 word addresses and vice-versa. The benefit is that this simple address can be communicated quickly, easily and with no ambiguity.
Why words and not numbers?
Three words are significantly more memorable than the equivalent alphanumeric characters or lat/long coordinates required to define the same location. Also from a consumer point of view, words are much quicker and easier to say.
The company says that words in a local language will provide unaddressed communities with a voice to communicate their needs.
Multiple languages can also be deployed. what3words is currently available in most of the official UN languages, as well as several others, including Vietnamese.
Who is using the system so far?
what3words is being used in over 170 countries by logistics firms, navigation apps, travel guides and NGOs. These include offline navigation giant Navmii, the United Nations disaster recovery app UN-ASIGN and Norway’s National Mapping website Norgeskart. The system works without a data connection and is available in multiple languages including Mongolian.
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