Amazon abandons live tests of Scout home delivery robot


FILE PHOTO: The Amazon logo is pictured inside the company's office in Bengaluru, India, April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Abhishek N. Chinnappa

(Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc will stop live tests of its automated delivery robot "Amazon Scout", a company spokesperson said in an emailed statement on Thursday, after the U.S. retailer realized the program did not completely meet its customers' needs.

The company is now scaling back or "reorienting" the program, and it will work with the involved employees to match them to other open roles within the organization, Amazon spokesperson Alisa Carroll said, adding that it was not abandoning the project altogether.

Amazon started testing the fully-electric Scout, which is of the size of a small cooler and rolled along the sidewalks at a walking pace, in Washington state in 2019 before expanding to Southern California, Georgia and Tennessee.

(Reporting by Gokul Pisharody in Bengaluru and Jeffrey Dastin; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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