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CES: The robots are coming

From robots that help one get around to robots that help one sleep, CES will host a huge line-up of humanoids that will assist daily tasks, writes BRYAN TURNER.



As applications for robotics expand far beyond toys and education, CES has become the central event for manufacturers and designers to showcase the cutting-edge of this sector.
To start with, LG and NAVER LABS will be showing off robots that help people get around. These robots will help provide guidance to customers as well as help carry items on their behalf.
LG’s PorterBot, ServeBot, and CartBot, first introduced to the public at CES 2018, are designed for environments like airports, hotels, supermarkets and malls to assist customers, transport luggage, deliver meals and carry groceries. The latest LG service robots have been updated with a more advanced autonomous navigation system as well as enhanced connectivity to allow for communication with mechanisms like elevators and automatic doors.
“The progress made by our entire robot lineup points to our commitment to deliver a robotic solution for the real world in the very near future,” says Jin Seo Roh, head of LG Robotics.
LG’s robots use AI technology to analyse customers’ usage patterns in order to learn and improve performance continuously. Equipped with touch displays and voice recognition to facilitate natural interaction with customers, these robots can handle complex tasks, such as answering questions and processing payments. The robots are designed to operate independently, navigating to a charging station when power runs low, returning to duty once fully recharged, and performing daily self-diagnosis and automatic reporting.
NAVER LABS will be showcasing an autonomous guide robot, called AROUND, that provides guidance in large indoor spaces, such as shopping malls, airports, and hotels. It also provides intuitive information through AR navigation. High-precision indoor maps, visual and sensor localisation are all serviced over NAVER’s robotics platform to provide accurate location sensing and to guide users to their destination via the best route.
AROUND has been manufactured to increase the popularity of indoor autonomous robots whose high price tag has, so far, prevented penetration in the consumer market. As a result of manufacturers making these robots more accessible, people will be able to experience a number of indoor autonomous robot services in different spaces and environments
Click here to see how robots are becoming caregivers of the future.