Amazon Scout

The online retailer and technology company Amazon announced on Tuesday the launch of a new mode of delivery in Franklin — Amazon Scout, a cooler-sized, self-driving delivery system that saw pilot tests begin Tuesday.

Amazon Scout is an electric delivery system that uses small, autonomous machines that roll along sidewalks at a walking pace to deliver packages. The pilot test will see Amazon Scout devices deliver packages to Franklin neighborhoods near the Cool Springs Mall area.

"I’m excited to announce that we are heading south in our journey and expanding operations to two new locations," wrote Sean Scott, vice president of Amazon Scout. "This week, we expanded our field test and Scout is now delivering packages to select customers in Atlanta, Georgia and Franklin, Tennessee."

First tested in Snohomish County, Washington, and Irvine, California, the Amazon Scout rollout to Franklin and Atlanta makes those two cities the third and fourth in the country to see the new mode of delivery.

"Each delivery device can navigate around pets, pedestrians, and other objects (including surfboards!) in its path," the release reads.

"We are starting with a small number of Amazon Scout devices in each city, delivering Monday through Friday, during daylight hours. Customers in both areas will order just as they normally would and their Amazon packages will be delivered either by one of our trusted carrier partners or by Amazon Scout."

Amazon Scout will also be partnering with local schools near Franklin to support STEM and robotics activities, according to the release.