Self-driving robots that could be Santa’s new helper

Small autonomous robots could soon become a familiar face on public pathways, thanks to the advent of ground-based drones that aim to improve local delivery of goods and groceries.

Former Skype co-founders have launched a new company, preparing to test their self-driving delivery robots in London.

The electric robot is Eco-friendly and fitted with navigation and obstacle avoidance software.

Starship says it will drive autonomously 99 percent of the time, but is overseen by human operators who can take control if needed.

For security – it has nine internet-connected cameras, a loudspeaker and microphone.The parcel compartment is locked and can only be opened by the customer’s smartphone.

Companies including Amazon are pioneering deliveries via aerial drone, such as this prototype.

But Starship says airborne drones aren’t a popular idea.