Wing holds hands-on town hall in Frisco ahead of delivery drone launch

Employees of drone-based delivery company Wing held a town hall on Oct. 28 on the upcoming drone delivery service in partnership with Walgreens. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Employees of drone-based delivery company Wing held a town hall on Oct. 28 on the upcoming drone delivery service in partnership with Walgreens. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)

Employees of drone-based delivery company Wing held a town hall on Oct. 28 on the upcoming drone delivery service in partnership with Walgreens. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
Jacob Demmitt, marketing and communications manager at Wing, holds one of the company's delivery drones in a town hall at the George A. Purefoy Municipal Center. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
A pill-shaped component connects up to 3-pound packages to Wing's delivery drones. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
A fleet of six delivery drones stationed at a Walgreens around west Frisco will soon be servicing residents in Frisco and Little Elm. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Drone-delivery company Wing is working to give Frisco residents more details and answer questions ahead of launching the first air-travel, retail delivery service in the region.

The subsidiary of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, held a town hall on Oct. 28 at the George A. Purefoy Municipal Center. More details were shared on Wing’s delivery drones about a week after the company announced its entry into Frisco, and questions were fielded from area residents. No service start date was announced.

Styrofoam drones airlifted by 12 propellers each will soon deliver roughly 100 different over-the-counter items from Walgreens to single-family homes in Frisco and Little Elm. A fleet of six drones will “nest” at a west Frisco-area Walgreens on Eldorado Parkway, according to Jacob Demmitt, Wing marketing and communications manager.

Select Frisco and Little Elm residents will be able to download the Wing app on both Apple’s App Store and the Google Play store for service, Demmitt said. Employees at the Frisco-area Walgreens will load non-prescription medicine, food items, toys and more onto the drones. The delivery units will cruise about 150 feet above ground at a speed of around 65 miles per hour, generating noise “equivalent to a conversation.”

“What we're doing in the Dallas-Fort Worth area is the first-ever, truly store-to-door drone delivery service,” Demmitt said.

Wing is also in partnership with Hillwood to prepare a separate drone delivery facility within the mixed-use development Frisco Station. For now, the second facility is focused on exploring new use cases and holding community demonstrations.

Questions asked both via Facebook Live stream and in person inquired over drone safety, efficiency and eventual service expansion plans. Residents wanted to know about “failsafes” to prevent drones crashing into individuals, buildings and cars.

Demmitt said Wing’s flight planning software can detect locations of obstacles and navigate around them. In addition, Wing head of flight operations Mark Blanks said low-resolution cameras incapable of capturing high-quality imagery of individuals are a backup to Wing’s GPS software.

The drones also weigh less than 10 pounds, Blanks said, and are designed to shatter upon impact to minimize injury risk.

“The aircraft is really designed so that if any condition like that happened, it would not harm a person severely,” he said. “It’s basically a bike helmet flying around.”

The up-to 50-mph winds observed around DFW on Oct. 28 were discussed at the town hall, which raised questions on drone resiliency through harsh weather conditions.

Blanks said the drones can handle “very strong” conditions, but described an extra-cautious approach. A team of pilots will oversee weather forecasts and determine whether to temporarily halt orders.

“If it’s really, really bad weather, for now, don’t plan on having us operating,” Blanks said. “But we expect a future where we will be able to operate in all those conditions.”

Delivery via drone will be free at the start of the service, according to Kendal Prosack, local policy and community affairs manager. Prosack said drones will require a picnic-sized blanket space of about 6-by-6 feet to offload up-to 3-pound, recyclable packages naturally by gravity.

Wing has developed seven iterations of its final delivery drone design, Demmitt said. Since starting up in 2012 and refining its technology, the team said they have used their drones to help Girl Scouts boost cookie sales, rent out library books amid a pandemic and help elderly individuals obtain everyday items.

“This is really us growing up, if you will,” Prosack said. “We started to crawl, now walk and hopefully we’re going to run soon.”

The city of Frisco will host Wing again in a Coffee with the Mayor event from 8-9 a.m. on Nov. 12 at the municipal center.

Prosack encouraged residents to email Wing with future vendor and service requests. Visit for more information, and emails can be sent to the team at [email protected]
By Matt Payne
Matt Payne reports on Frisco City Hall and its committees, Collin County Commissioners and McKinney business. His experience includes serving as online content editor at Fort Worth Magazine and city editor at the Killeen Daily Herald. He is a 2017 graduate of the Frank W. and Sue Mayborn School of Journalism at the University of North Texas in Denton.


six chocolate bars of varying flavors
Läderach brings Swiss chocolate to Stonebriar Centre in Frisco

Pralines, truffles and chocolate-covered popcorn are a few of the store's popular selections.

Poki Bowl plans to open in February at 16710 FM 423, Ste. 100, Frisco. (Courtesy Poki Bowl)
Poki Bowl to open in north Frisco

The quick-serve poke restaurant will let guests build bowls from white/brown rice or lettuce.

Texas Smile Co. is expected to open in December at 13355 Dallas Parkway, Ste. 400, Frisco. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Texas Smile Co. dental office to open at Panther Creek Crossing in Frisco

The dental practice is owned by Texas-native doctors Kyle and Caitlyn Poupart

The Gringo's location in Katy is pictured. A new Conroe location is planned for late 2022. (Courtesy NewQuest Properties)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Gringo's restaurant confirmed for Conroe Waterfront Center; Austin’s longest-standing H-E-B to be rebuilt and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 7.

meeting in progress
Denton County sees decrease in COVID-19 illness rates, increase in deaths

During the week of Nov. 29, 14 deaths related to COVID-19 were reported in the county, which brought the total to 752.

US Attorney General Merrick Garland and US Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta announced the lawsuit against Texas on Dec. 6. (Screenshot courtesy of Department of Justice)
U.S. Dept. of Justice lawsuit alleges Texas' redistricting maps discriminate against voters of color

The suit alleges that the Texas Legislature redrew the maps to reduce voters of colors' influence on elections.

Collin County Commissioners discussed a request Dec. 6 for LifePath Systems to purchase land for a new facility. (Screenshot by Miranda Jaimes/Community Impact Newspaper)
LifePath Systems looks to expand mental health services with new McKinney facility

The property in question would be visible to law enforcement and others driving toward the jail and allow LifePath Systems to design professional office space. The intent would be to relocate all of LifePath’s crisis services to this facility.

Henry & Peters building entrance
Henry & Peters Certified Public Accountants opens office in Frisco

The office will host a ribbon cutting and open house on Jan. 6

high school lobby under construction
Attendance zones set up Frisco ISD’s newest schools

Panther Creek High School is in the midst of hiring for the campus that will open in fall 2022.

The 6.5-mile project will be an important connection for the pedestrian, bicycle and transit networks, according to city officials. (Courtesy Austin Public Works)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: City of Austin begins design of urban trail on abandoned rail corridor; 12 things to do in and around New Braunfels this holiday season and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Dec. 6.

Mochinut is expected to open in 90 to 120 days at 13355 Dallas Parkway, Ste. 500, Frisco. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Mochinut to open near Panther Creek Parkway in north Frisco

The restaurant specializes in mochi donuts and Korean rice flour hotdogs.

Honest Frisco opened in November at 1640 FM 423, Ste. 200. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
Indian vegetarian restaurant Honest Frisco opens near India Bazaar; Lewisville ISD board names an interim superintendent and more top DFW news

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.