A Robot in My Grocery Store? Why Retail Robots Can Now Be Seen Wandering the Aisles! by Jessica Acree
A trip to the grocery store is almost done on auto-pilot these days. We bob and weave through the aisles checking off each item on our list, careful to take note of new items and worthy sales, all while navigating the crowds with ease. Imagine rounding the corner to be faced with a robot, basically doing the same thing. Yes, a robot!
Walmart recently solidified a partnership with Bossa Nova, a California-based robotics company, to test its autonomous inventory-scanning robots at 50 stores. The machine does what a typical clerk would do with a scanner gun. It scans the products in a systematic way collecting data on pricing, restocking, item popularity, etc. That data is then used for ordering and more.
Some may fear the retail robot will eliminate jobs, but the company says the ultimate goal is to take care of the "tedious shelf-auditing tasks, allowing employees to focus on more important things like … you!" In doing so, Bossa Nova says the store can then operate more efficiently.
If you see one, don't worry – the robot is rumored to be very good at avoiding disaster by going around people, boxes and displays.
Could this be the future?
Photo: Bossa Nova Robotics Facebook