In the latest challenge of ‘robotic picking’, Amazon has finally crowned the latest champion. Robotic picking is an annual competition designed to find the best robots, that can pick stuff off a shelf and put them back in again.
In this year’s competition, the champion was from the TU Delft Robotics institute which was a joint team. The robot could pick items from a warehouse, at a somewhat slow speed. Humans can, work much quicker, however this was a much better attempt than the previous year’s competition.
Even though, everyone believes that the robots are trying to replace humans in jobs, Amazon does insist that this will not be the case. An Amazon spokesman has even come out and announced the following:
“Robotics enhance the job for employees but does not replace them”.
Amazon has bought Kiva (robotics firm) for $775 million (£591million in the UK) in 2012. Despite popular belief, the employee number has since then risen and continues to grow.
Today, Amazon has around 25,000-30,000 Kiva bots working in the warehouses owned by Amazon.
What are your thoughts on this? Is the world becoming less dependent on humans, and rather using robots? Are robots stealing our jobs?