Here come the retail robots

Here come the retail robots

The robot revolution is here. As consumers continue to demand efficient and better-connected experiences, retailers are responding with a number of AI-driven innovation projects.

Check out our latest video to find out what’s in-store for the world of retail.

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Transcript:

Once the feared villain of countless science-fiction movies, robotics are quickly becoming more embraced by a world once weary. From warehousing to housecleaning, robotics are entering the mainstream as a tool for both consumers and businesses alike.

The robot revolution is no longer some distant dystopian scenario. Robots are here and retail as we know it is in for some major disruption.

“In the aisle and in the back room of your local retail store, the robots are indeed coming to reduce costs and optimize operations.” – Tony D’Onofrio, RETHINK retail advisor

Big name retailers like Walmart, Target and Lowe’s have already been working toward employing data retrieving robots to streamline labour, improve customer service and even make personalized product recommendations.

A recent pilot by Target used Tally, an inventory control robot built by Cindy robotics to browse aisles in scan SKUs. In just one hour Tally could scan between 20,000 and 30,000 SKUs, a job that would take humans more than four hours to complete.

Over at Lowe’s, the home and hardware retailer has experimented with a number of AI-led projects. It’s low bot, an in-store autonomous robot, is able to answer basic questions and navigate customers throughout a store.

Low bot can also keep track of inventory and detect elemental sales patterns. All of this helps empower those human associates to provide better more complex customer service solutions. And for those who prefer to shop at home, you may soon find a robot at your door.

FedEx and Amazon are both testing their own autonomous delivery robots. FedEx’s [SameDay Bot] and Amazon’s Scout are designed with cameras, radar and laser-based mapping tools and can self-navigate themselves across sidewalks and streets.

As Amazon moves toward total self-reliance, Lowe’s and Target have both signed on to the FedEx program, a move that will help the retailers better meet their customers’ demands for speedy local delivery.

So while robots won’t be taking over the world just yet, consumers and retailers alike can expect to encounter more AI in their daily lives. But don’t take our word for it. When in doubt, you can always ask Alexa!

Credits:

  • Written and Narrated by Gabriella Bock
  • Commentary by Tony D’Onofrio
  • Edited by Connor Bock

Footage:

  • Scout footage: Courtesy of Amazon
  • FedEx Roxo footage: Courtesy of FedEx
  • LowesBot images and footage: Courtesy of Fellow Robots, Inc.
  • Tally images and footage: Courtesy of Simbe Robotics

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