Drones

Drone service delivers extra balls to wayward golfers

If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
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Through a dedicated Android app, golfers can place their orders which are relayed to a depot where workers load up a box with the necessary items
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Through a dedicated Android app, golfers can place their orders which are relayed to a depot where workers load up a box with the necessary items
The aircraft will fly autonomously to designated drop-off points, automatically releasing the box for users to retrieve
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The aircraft will fly autonomously to designated drop-off points, automatically releasing the box for users to retrieve
If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
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If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
The aircraft will fly autonomously to designated drop-off points, automatically releasing the box for users to retrieve
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The aircraft will fly autonomously to designated drop-off points, automatically releasing the box for users to retrieve
Golfers who have played a few to many errant shots can call on the company's Tenku drones to bring them extra balls
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Golfers who have played a few to many errant shots can call on the company's Tenku drones to bring them extra balls
Dubbed Sora Raku, Rakuten will begin a month-long trial of its drone delivery service at the Camel Golf Resort in the Chiba Prefecture on May 9
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Dubbed Sora Raku, Rakuten will begin a month-long trial of its drone delivery service at the Camel Golf Resort in the Chiba Prefecture on May 9
If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
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If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service to sparsely populated areas and mountain regions
Golfers who have played a few to many errant shots can call on the company's Tenku drones to bring them extra balls
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Golfers who have played a few to many errant shots can call on the company's Tenku drones to bring them extra balls

Drone delivery trials are underway around the world, with everything from pizzas to urgent medical supplies being considered as potential cargo. Now golf balls can be added to the list. Japanese online shopping giant Rakuten is teeing off its drone delivery service next month, which will drop off balls and snacks to golfers during their rounds.

Dubbed Sora Raku, Rakuten will begin a month-long trial of its drone delivery service at the Camel Golf Resort in the Chiba Prefecture on May 9. Golfers who have played a few too many errant shots can call on the company's Tenku drones to bring them extra balls, along with other equipment, snacks and drinks.

Through a dedicated Android app, golfers can place their orders which are relayed to a depot where workers load up a box with the necessary items
Through a dedicated Android app, golfers can place their orders which are relayed to a depot where workers load up a box with the necessary items

Golfers can place their orders through a dedicated Android app. These are relayed to a depot where workers load up a box with the necessary items and slot it into a compartment below the drone. The aircraft will then fly autonomously to designated drop-off points, automatically releasing the box for users to retrieve, before returning to the depot.

If the trial is successful, Rakuten hopes to expand the Sora Raku service beyond the links. Potential applications include deliveries in sparsely populated areas and mountain regions, along with disaster zones.

You can see a demo of the drone delivery service in the video below.

Source: Rakuten

2 comments
Bob Flint
It takes 3 seconds to grab another ball outta my pocket, maybe a minute if I have to go back to the cart. The site doesn't say how long the wait is for a few balls? I estimate at best; Pull out phone, & load app, enter credit card number, signal sent, message received, someone has to load the device, and send out, flight time to furthest hole total time 7-10 minutes, meanwhile let next group play through, while all you buddies wait?? No one else had a spare ball really???
GaryOwens
If one of these things comes "Droning" around any golf course that I'm using it'll get shot out of the sky ! By me, and I'm sure, many other golfers. If we could hit a ball straight enough to hit it of course !!