E-commerce giant Amazon launched new warehouse robots Ernie and Bert that could join the warehouse employees. Those are the names of the new robots Amazon is testing intending to reduce strenuous movements for workers.
The introduction of robots to the workplace often raises questions about whether human jobs will be replaced. E-commerce giant Amazon made a statement they simply allow workers to focus on tasks that most need their attention while minimizing their potential for injury. Amazon also added a million jobs around the world since it began using robotics in its facilities in 2012.In May, E-commerce giant Amazon announced a goal of reducing recordable incident rates by 50% by 2025. It plans to invest over $300 million into safety projects this year. Amazon described on Sunday that four robots it’s testing to move items across its fulfilment centers and closer to workers.
Ernie helps remove items from a robotic shelf so employees don’t have to. The process doesn’t save time. The testing revealed that it could make work safer for employees.Bert is one of Amazon’s first Autonomous Mobile Robots made to navigate facilities independently, even while workers are moving around. Bert would not need to remain in a restricted space, meaning workers could ask to take items across a facility. Amazon said Bert could move heavier items.
Scooter and Kermit are two other AMRs under development that transport carts. The company said these types of robots could take over workers’ tasks of moving empty packages across facilities so they can concentrate on activities expecting critical thinking skills and reduce physically difficult work.Kermit, which follows magnetic tape to move empty totes, is further along in development and will be introduced in at least a dozen North American sites this year. Amazon said it plans to deploy Scooter in at least one facility this year.