Pizza Hut and Toyota have announced that they've "forged a global partnership to explore the future of pizza delivery," which means we all better get ready for a bunch of autonomous pizza delivery vehicle-kiosk things cruising the streets of our cities in the next few years. And while some of that new reality sounds kind of appealing, it's hard not to immediately think about one of this season's Black Mirror episodes, "Crocodile." Anybody who's seen that episode knows that autonomous pizza vehicle-kiosk things can lead to some very, very dark ideas.
You know, like putting pineapple on your pizza.
— Pizza Hut (@pizzahut) January 8, 2018
In a press release, Pizza Hut said that it will be a founding member of a new "mobility service business alliance," which will apparently take advantage of Toyota's new e-Palette autonomous vehicle platform. The other members of the alliance include Didi, Amazon, Mazda and Uber, in what seems like an attempt to figure out the best way to cut up the future market of ride sharing and mobile vehicle-kiosk things.
As for the e-Palette, that was introduced at this year's CES in Las Vegas and is basically a tabula rasa autonomous vehicle that can serve as something like a delivery unit or even a tiny little store for various shops and food services. Or, in the case of Pizza Hut, a pizza delivery vehicle-kiosk thing much like the one in "Crocodile." In fact, the vehicles are so similar, the official Black Mirror twitter account even had to comment.
We know how this goes. https://t.co/1nTDxuOrlD
— Black Mirror (@blackmirror) January 8, 2018
The press release notes that Toyota is going to begin testing its e-Palette platform—seen in the video below—in the U.S. in 2020, so people will have to wait until at least then before they can expect to grab a pizza from a giant, autonomous glass and metal pill that wants to take your money and feed you pizza. Until that happens, Pizza Hut says that it's working with Toyota to capture delivery driver data, which will undoubtedly be used to train autonomous vehicle neural nets. There's also, far less excitingly, a new bag in the works that will keep pizzas 15% hotter. Although Charlie Brooker could still probably come up with a seriously twisted story just based off of that.
What do you think about this partnership between Toyota and Pizza Hut? Are you all about this new e-Palette pizza mashup, or are you a bigger fan of Domino's strategy? Give us your thoughts in the comments below!
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