“80 per cent of people pay no attention to the robot at all. They just walk past as if it is the most normal thing.”
Michael Dempsey reports that earthbound robots could shape the future in the shipping industry.
Amazon recently began trials of flying drones to make deliverers. Dempsey reveals that an earthbound robot could carry much more than an airborne drone. An earthbound robot can carry up to 13 kilogrammes. Stuart Rivett, managing director of Dutch parcel distribution business B2C Europe, believes the Amazon’s drone trial was “ a complete PR stunt.” Rivett further states that the weight limit that the drone can carry is a handicap.
Dempsey states that about 20,000 people have witnessed the earthbound robots undergoing tests around the streets of Estonia, Germany, and Greenwich in London. Dempsey says, “Sensors on a robot’s casing detect pedestrians and obstacles and instruct it to slow down, stop or change course while operators can talk remotely to people who come across it via a speaker.”
Allan Martinson, Chief Operating Officer of Starship Technologies, the company responsible for making the robot states that about “80 per cent of people pay no attention to the robot at all. They just walk past as if it is the most normal thing.” The robot has a range of 3 miles with a battery life of 2-2.5 hours. Dempsey further reports that Starship believes that a robot moving at walking pace could possibly cut 30 per cent of vehicle deliveries. Dempsey states, “Vans would drop goods in bulk at convenient centres where local orders could be put into robots, slashing costs of drivers, fuel, vans and congestion.”
Safety is another bonus feature when using an earthbound robot instead of drones as a method of delivery. The drone has a risk of being overweight or unbalanced causing items to fall from the sky potentially damaging humans or property. In addition, Trevor Dorling, lead at Digital Greenwich, states that the legal issues for robots are much “simpler than those associated with airborne drones.”
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