TechImpact Robot






WALMART IS GIVING UP ON ITS INVENTORY ROBOTS (Retail/Inventory Control - 2020-11 - Engadget)

While Walmart plans to experiment with some kinds of robots and automated tech, it will no longer use robots to scan shelves and track inventory as people can do the job better without affecting other workers and customers.

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A smarter, more capable Flippy robot knows how to fry 19 things (Retail/Food Service - 2020-10 - Engadget)

Miso Robotics (makers of Flippy, the burger-flipping robot chef) is making the latest iteration of Flippy available commercially across the globe. Flippy can now cook 19 different items — anything from corn dogs to chicken tenders — and that number will expand now that the robot is trainable via an upgraded machine learning system. In addition, the proprietary ChefUI software will assist kitchen workers with operational interactions and workflow.

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Sam’s Club will deploy autonomous floor-scrubbing robots in all of its U.S. locations (Retail/Warehousing - 2020-10 - TechCrunch)

Sam’s Club is adding another 372 Tennant’s T7AMR scrubbers in 2020, bringing the technology to all 599 U.S. stores. The mopping robots will also check on shelving inventory.

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Stores in Japan are stocking shelves with remote-controlled robots (Retail/Store Inventory - 2020-09 - Futurism)

Two major convenience store franchises in Japan are testing robots for stocking shelves. The 7’ remotely-controlled robot (‘Model-T’), which has 2 hands, each with 3 fingers, was developed by Japanese startup Telexistence.

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A vending machine to order quality customized pizzas (Retail/Restaurant - 2020-06 - ZDNet)

Piestro, which is currently raising money via crowdfunding site StartEngine, is producing a standalone, fully integrated cooking system and dispenser, creating an automated pizzeria that combines fresh ingredients and custom recipes to build what are claimed to be high-quality pizzas.

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Retail robots are on the rise—at every level of the industry (Retail - 2019-12 - Singularity Hub)

A review of the use of robots in the retail industry, as of December 2019. this includes stocking shelves, serving customers, and delivering products to our doorstep.

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LG installs noodle-making robot in restaurant (Retail/Restaurant - 2019-11 - ZDNet)

LG Electronics has deployed a robot that can make and serve noodles at a family restaurant in Seoul. Customers will hand over a bowl with selected ingredients to the robot (Chefbot), which will prepare noodles and gravy in about a minute.

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Softbank to open a cafe run by Pepper robots (Retail/Restaurant - 2019-09 - ZDNet)

Softbank Robotics is developing a Tokyo cafe that will be run by its humanoid robot Pepper. Pepper Parlor will use both human and robot staff, and is set to open in December 2020. Pepper was developed for SoftBank by Aldebaran, a French robotics company specializing in emotionally intelligent humanoids that can function in unstructured environments like homes, shops, and specialized care facilities.

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A team of robots fulfills an order in 1 hour (Retail/Order Fulfillment - 2019-04 - ZDNet)

By harnessing networks of tiny automated hubs, micro-fulfillment could enable retailers to store their goods in the hearts of cities while still benefiting from the efficiency of automation. CommonSense Robotics has achieved its first 1-hour fulfillment delivery in partnership with an Israeli health and beauty retailer.

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Walmart to use nearly 4,000 more robots in stores (Retail/Stores - 2019-04 - Fox Business)

Walmart is adding >3,900 robots in stores to help monitor inventory, clean floors and unload trucks, including 1,500 new autonomous floor cleaners, 300 additional shelf scanners, 1,200 unloaders and 900 new pickup towers.

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FedEx partners with Walmart, Pizza Hut to test last-mile delivery robot (Retail/Courier - 2019-03 - Reuters)

This summer, FedEx Corp plans to test a robot to handle home deliveries for partners ranging from Walmart Inc to Pizza Hut. The battery-powered robot will look like a cooler on wheels, and be developed by DEKA Development & Research Corp, travelling at a top speed of 10 mph.

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500 robots infiltrate US grocery stores to identify safety hazards (Retail/Store Safety - 2019-01 -

US GIANT/MARTIN’S and Stop & Shop grocery stores will deploy nearly 500 autonomous robots after successful pilot runs that improved store safety and efficiency. The robots identify safety hazards such as liquid, powder, and bulk food spills, and then apply corrective actions.

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A robotic bartender who serves drinks ordered through a phone app (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - Reuters)

The Cyberdog in Prague features a robotic bartender who serves drinks ordered through a phone app. Its red robotic arm picks among seven wines on offer in a cool box. It then opens the bottle and pours up to four glasses at a time. Next it lifts the glasses on a tray that travels overhead to the customers’ table, then lowers the load so people can pick up their glasses.

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Robots are cooking in fast food restaurants (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - BBC)

A review of the use of robots in food preparation.

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Amazon and Walmart add more robots, but insist they won’t terminate jobs (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - FastCompany)

Use of robots in distribution and order fulfillment centres, retail stores, and customer delivery. Companies say automation will lead to new jobs, but critics worry about phased-out humans. Quote “This robot can do in about 2.5 hours what it was taking an associate around 2 weeks …”

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Postmates has launched a delivery robot that will bring lunch to your door (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - MIT Technology Review)

Postmates, the logistics firm, has unveiled a robot (‘Serve’) that will deliver groceries/lunch in Los Angeles. Serve, which looks like a lunchbox on wheels, will travel along sidewalks at walking speed, carrying up to 50 lbs. Serve travel most of the way in a Postmates car before taking the delivery to the customer’s door. 

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Burger restaurant has fully-automated kitchen (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - BBC Future)

Creator, a new restaurant in San Francisco, uses two family-car-sized robots, churning out 120 burgers/hour. They grind meat, shape burgers, slice tomatoes, grate cheese, and dispense mustard. Each burger can be customized with different sauces, cheeses and toppings, and is precision grilled. Each robot has 350 sensors, 50 actuators, and 20 computers.

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On-line order fulfillment centre can process 65,000 orders/week (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-12 - PC Mag)

UK’s Ocada Technology operates an automated grocery order fulfillment center that uses over 1,000 made-in-Britain robots to pick a 50-item order in 5 mins from a 50,000 menu of items. The battery-operated, orchestrated robots move, at 18 mph, on a vast grid, where each location contains a stack of storage bins. Bins are brought to pick stations to fulfill a customer order. (Watch the video above.)

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Amazon is hiring fewer workers this holiday season, a sign that robots are replacing them (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-11 - Quartz)

Amazon staffing for the holidays is 20,000 less than for 2017. This may be due to increased automation in its warehouses, where a robot can handle in 15 minutes the sorting, picking, packing, and shipping that used to take human workers an hour or more to complete.

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Robot is chef at a new burger joint (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-06 - FastCompany)

Creator, a new San Francisco restaurant, uses a robot to slice buns, add condiments, prepare and add fresh toppings, grill the meat, creating a fully prepared hamburger–all without any human intervention.

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A British supermarket is using greater than 1,000 robots to make online grocery shopping faster (Robotics/Automated Warehouse - 2018-05 - The Verge)

Ocado, a British online-only supermarket, has created a warehouse, involving a hive-grid-machine with over one thousand robots, each the size and shape of a washing machine, that lift, move, and sort groceries. The operation will process 3.5 million items or around 65,000 orders every week.

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11 jobs teens are about to lose to robots (Robotics - 2018-05 - ZDNet)

The 11 jobs are Bellhop, Barista, Pizza delivery driver, Line cook, Security guard, Lifeguard, Cashier, Host, Landscaping, Pizza chef, and (a stretch) dogwalker.

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Robot helps wait staff by bringing food to the tables (Robotics/Restaurants - 2018-03 - FastCompany)

The Kang Nam Tofu House in Milpitas, California, is the first in the world to use a robot to bring food and bills to tables, acting as an assistant to, rather than replacing, human servers, and allowing them to focus more on customer service, Penny is a small, pedestal-shaped robot designed to navigate in a restaurant’s crowded, narrow spaces, using sensors to avoid any obstacles. After all table and kitchen locations are programmed in, the robot makes a map of the restaurant.

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Miso Robotics gets VC funding for its burger-flipping robot (Robotics/Food Service - 2018-02 - ZDNet)

Miso Robotics, the creator of a burger flipping robot named Flippy, announced $10 million in Series B financing. The size of the $3 trillion global prepared foods industry, coupled with rising minimum wages, has prompted a rush to create automation solutions in fast food. Flippy is a lightweight industrial robotic arm with a spatula for an end effector and is now just flipping burgers. But its AI can learn to adjust cooking duration, and ensure perfect production. A robot costs about $60,000, and will soon do more, like toasting buns and grilling onions.

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Robot fired from Scottish grocery store for poor performance (Robotics - 2018-01 - TechRepublic)

A shop robot named Fabio was recently fired from an Edinburgh supermarket, Margiotta, after failing to perform in a helpful manner and confusing some customers. The robot was unable to assist customers in finding the products they were looking for, and many customers ended up going out of their way to avoid it. Fabio was a custom version of SoftBank’s Pepper robot, programmed by Heriot-Watt University to be able to find certain product SKUs in the store.

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Walmart is using robots to scan shelves for out-of-stock items, incorrect prices, and missing labels (Robotics/Walmart - 2017-10 - TechRepublic)

Walmart is using robots to scans shelves for out-of-stock items, incorrect prices, and missing labels, freeing up employees to work with customers. Initial tests of the program took place in a few Walmart stores across Arkansas, Pennsylvania, and California. Walmart will be expanding to 50 more stores, relying on customer and employee feedback as it grows.

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Miso Robotics' hamburger-flipping robot debuts in Caliburger's Pasadena outlet (Robotics/Fast Food - 2017-09 - FutureScope)

Miso Robotics’ hamburger-flipping robot debuts in one of its investor’s (Caliburger) outlets in Pasadena – the first of 50 planned. Flippy is an industrial robotic arm, bolted to the floor. After an exclusive 6-months, the robot will be sold for around $60,000.

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Open source personal robot kit for the family to learn about robotics (Robotics - 2017-07 -

Thecorpora launched a successful crowdfunding campaign to get its robot to the market. The robot is easy to build, simple to program, and easy to hack. This desktop bot is 400 mm tall and will be supplied in kit form so that would-be roboticists can learn how to build it, and it was designed around an open source software and hardware architecture.

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Robot food delivery started in California (Robotics/Courier - 2017-03 - BuzzFeed)

This Thursday, the on-demand delivery company DoorDash is putting a small fleet of six-wheeled delivery robots into action for the first time in Redwood City, California, following weeks of tests. The robots, built by a company called Starship Technologies, are about the size of a golden retriever and roll around sidewalks with relative ease. They’ll be used to lug food from restaurants to customers on short-distance orders spanning anywhere from one to two miles.

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McDonald's testing an automated burger dispensary (Robotics/Food Dispensing - 2017-01 -

McDonald’s is testing an automated burger dispensary in one Boston location, for one day only, on Jan. 31. By touching a screen, customers can choose between three sizes of Big Mac.

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