Updated from 9:38 a.m. to include additional analysis on UPS in the ninth paragraph.
NEW YORK (TheStreet) In yesterday's letter to shareholders, Amazon (AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos touched on a number of initiatives, but perhaps the biggest is the company's plan for faster delivery. Not only is the Internet retailer really serious about providing a better experience for customers, its drone plans are bigger than anyone imagined.
This particular passage from the letter to shareholders was beyond startling, revealing the ambitious scale of Amazon's plans for drones, which were initially revealed just a few months ago:
"In partnership with the United States Postal Service, we've begun for the first time to offer Sunday delivery to select cities. Sunday delivery is a win for Amazon customers, and we plan to roll it out to a large portion of the U.S. population throughout 2014. We've created our own fast, last-mile delivery networks in the UK where commercial carriers couldn't support our peak volumes. In India and China, where delivery infrastructure isn't yet mature, you can see Amazon bike couriers delivering packages throughout the major cities. And there is more invention to come. The Prime Air team is already flight testing our 5th and 6th generation aerial vehicles, and we are in the design phase on generations 7 and 8."
The fact that Amazon and its Prime Air team are testing 5th and 6th generation aerial vehicles (read: drones), and working on gens. 7 and 8, despite the fact they aren't even ready for prime time yet is beyond amazing. We first heard about Amazon's plans for aerial delivery vehicles in December, when Bezos appeared on CBS' 60 Minutes, and showed off the technology to interviewer Charlie Rose. Rose promptly responded with "Oh my God!" when seeing the technology at work.