Dec 5, 2023 - Economy

Uber rolls out "robot reindeer" complete with antlers

Uber is dressing delivery robots up as reindeer

If you're in Miami, Los Angeles or Fairfax, Virginia, be on the lookout for delivery robots dressed as reindeer. Photo: Courtesy of Uber

Uber is rolling out robots dressed as reindeer and a "festive fleet" of karaoke charter buses decked out with lights.

Driving the news: The San Francisco-based company announced a bundle of holiday products Tuesday, including a new store pickup program launching in more than 1,700 cities and towns across the country.

What's happening: Noah Zych, Uber global head of autonomous mobility and delivery, told Axios that the "robot reindeer" will be delivering some Uber Eats food orders in Miami, Fairfax, Virginia and Los Angeles.

  • The robots are in places where there are a lot of restaurants and people, Zych said, adding the idea of dressing them up is to "bring some holiday cheer."
  • The robots with noses and antlers could also have names and Zych said, "There may be a Rudolph out there. I can confirm that."
  • The delivery robots have been in the three markets since last year.

Meanwhile, the fleet of charter buses decorated with holiday lights is available to book in Miami and Washington, D.C., as well as Chicago, New York City and Los Angeles.

Uber Charter bus that is decorated with holiday lights and says "festive fleet"
Uber's "Festive Fleet" will be available in five cities. Photo: Courtesy of Uber

Uber store pickup program

Zoom in: The new store pickup program, which runs through Uber Connect, will be available Tuesday across the nation and works similarly to the package returns program that began in October.

  • With the program, customers can arrange for an Uber courier to pick up and deliver orders purchased at local stores.
  • Cities included in the rollout include Austin, Dallas and Houston, Texas; Miami, Tampa Bay and Orlando, Florida; Phoenix, Arizona; Philadelphia; Boston; Chicago; and parts of California, including San Francisco.
  • The program will be expanded to more cities in the future.

Between the lines: The pickup and delivery program isn't free and prices mirror Uber Connect prices, which vary.

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