Amazon and the United States Federal Aviation Administration aren’t exactly seeing eye-to-eye. Earlier this month, the FAA granted Amazon permission to test its drones under certain scenarios in the United States. Unfortunately, permission was granted for an earlier version of Amazon’s delivery drones. The firm’s head of public policy bashed the FAA last week, suggesting the administration moves too slowly, and now the firm is heading northward to test its drones.
The Guardian said recently that Amazon is flying its new drones up at a secret location in Canada that’s just “2,000 feet from the U.S. border.” Experts include former NASA and Boeing engineers, the news outlet said, and apparently Canada’s government — unlike the U.S. — is supportive of the tests. Amazon is currently trying to fly its new zones between 200 and 500 feet in the air at up to 50 mph and at distances as far as 10 miles, The Guardian said. Payloads can be as heavy as 5 pounds.
The Canadian tests, which have apparently been ongoing for months, may help light a fire under the FAA’s sluggish approval process, in an effort to cater to U.S.-based innovation. Amazon is convinced it will be able to create a safe delivery mechanism using drones, and it’s apparent it will fight to prove that — even if it needs to test in international territories first.