Blurred lines – the future of robotics

The Spark

22nd June 2017

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Following the recent news that Softbank is buying robotics firms Boston Dynamics and Schaft from Alphabet, it’s becoming more apparent that this technology is going to become a key driver in the next stage of the information revolution.

Robotics products already have commercial applications in many sectors and can cleverly mimic human and animal movement. Atlas, a humanoid model that co-ordinates motion and balance using its arms and legs, can impressively pick itself up off the ground when knocked over.

Online retailers are using robots to work alongside humans in warehouses to retrieve and seal orders. The recent development from Locus Robotics enables bots to work more effectively together by ‘talking’ to each other, and alongside humans in crowded warehouses. The LRAN system, which stands for Locus Robotics Advanced Navigation, debuted at the industry trade show in ProMat in Chicago.

Hospitality is another industry using the advancements in the robotics space. The futuristic hotel chain, Yotel, located in London, Amsterdam and New York, employs robotic staff to carry guests’ luggage, deliver laundry, clean rooms and make coffee.

While there is debate around robots stealing jobs, labour costs are pushing organisations to automate their processes with the use of robots. As such, the global robotics technology market is expected to reach £65.48 billion by 2020, so we can expect to see robots entering not only businesses but also homes in the coming years. Watch this space.

 

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