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Oz bookshop to deliver by drone

Guys? You do know Amazon can already deliver books to your smartphone?

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An Australian university textbook rental outfit called Zookal has promised to deliver its wares by drone.

Zookal has teamed with another Sydney startup, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) outfit Flirtey, to deliver books.

Customers order books using their smartphone and once loaded Flirtey's drone homes in on that device thanks to some GPS wizardry. Flirtey's birds are hexacopters and can fly even if they lose one rotor.

The two companies feel the service will … erm … fly because posting books takes too long. By undercutting the postal service on time and price, they think they're on a winner.

Just when the drone delivery service will emerge isn't discussed, but tests are promised on the University of Sydney's campus.

Of course it's already possible to have books delivered to a smartphone: Amazon's Kindle app is available on iOS, Android, Windows Phone and even BlackBerry while the Nook app works on the first three OSes mentioned.

Today, not every textbook is available as an eBook. Vulture South wonders what will come first: drone delivery or an eBook epiphany for textbook publishers? ®

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