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Samsung phones can now be delivered by drone in Galway

Samsung has entered into a trial drone delivery agreement with Manna Aero in the Galway town of Oranmore.

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Air drop: Eamonn Grant of Samsung and Manna Aero's Alan Hicks demonstrate drone deliveries of Galaxy devices in Oranmore, Co Galway

Air drop: Eamonn Grant of Samsung and Manna Aero's Alan Hicks demonstrate drone deliveries of Galaxy devices in Oranmore, Co Galway

Air drop: Eamonn Grant of Samsung and Manna Aero's Alan Hicks demonstrate drone deliveries of Galaxy devices in Oranmore, Co Galway

Anyone who orders a phone, tablet or smartwatch from Samsung can soon have it delivered by drone if they live in Oranmore, County Galway.

Samsung has become the latest company to join the ongoing drone delivery trial services to the Galway town from Manna Aero, the startup founded by Bobby Healy.

Other trial participants in the area have included Tesco and fast food companies.

The drones typically fly at an altitude of between 50 metres and 80 metres and at a speed of over 60kph.

“This partnership with Samsung marks the first of its kind in the world,” said Alan Hicks, chief technology officer of Manna Aero.

“To date, we have been working with Tesco and local businesses to deliver grocery, hot food, books and pharmacy items to people in the area.

"We recognise that the potential for the application of drone delivery is enormous.”

Manna’s delivery services in Oranmore have been running for a year.

The company is hoping to prove to the Irish Aviation Authority that drone deliveries can be safe and practical.

The IAA has not commented on whether it thinks Manna Aero will be allowed to expand its service across the rest of Ireland.

But the company’s founder, Bobby Healy, has said that he hopes to launch drone deliveries in bigger countries.

“To be able to deliver our products to our customers within three minutes of leaving the dispatch centre is a brilliant example of innovation in motion,” said Eamonn Grant, head of online for Samsung Ireland.

“In the current environment, there is no better time to provide a contactless alternative to ‘click and collect’ and we are really thrilled to be partnering Manna to achieve this.”

Samsung says that the new service will allow customers to order online from the Irish Samsung store, although it was not operational at the time of press.

Samsung does not charge for delivery of its phones.

The company says that the service will “first” be made available in Oranmore with Samsung and Manna "keen to expand this service nationwide in the future”.

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