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A robot might deliver your Postmates orders in the future

Serve robots could make deliveries by traveling on sidewalks.


Serve can carry about 50 pounds. 

Screenshot by CNET

In the future, that burrito you ordered from delivery service Postmates might show up at your door, handed over by a robot.

Postmates is working on a fleet of delivery robots called Serve, the company said in a blog post Thursday.

Serve robots would "work alongside the existing Postmates fleet to move small objects over short distances efficiently," the post said, noting the robots would travel at walking speed, run on electricity and bypass congestion by traveling on sidewalks. 

The Lidar-equipped robots can carry up to 50 pounds, or 23 kilograms. When a Serve robot shows up at your door, you'd use a touch screen to interact with it.

In the post, Postmates talked about the idea of these robots working with humans, perhaps making a delivery instead of a human if a person is trying to find parking. The topic of automation and job loss is hot these days. A 2017 study from Ball State University projected 50 percent of low-skilled jobs will be replaced by AI and automation.

"Too often we hear about the fear that robots will replace our workforce, but people are essential to solving problems on the go," the post said. 

Postmates did not immediately respond to a request for comment about when Serve will be out in the wild.