As the first company in the world, Ford Motor Company will now use the Digit robot. Equipped with arms and legs, Digit will work with people to make goods delivery cheaper and more efficient for Ford's commercial vehicle customers.
One of Ford's partners, Agility Robotics, launched the robot for commercial sale, where the first two were delivered to the car manufacturer. In addition, Ford will present these two prototypes in connection with the large technology fair CES which is now being held in Las Vegas.
One of the essential things in future collaboration is finding better and more efficient methods for transporting the goods from the warehouse to the commercial vehicle to transport the goods to the final destination. The partnership also focuses on how Ford's commercial vehicles and the robot Digit will be able to communicate directly with each other and the environment. For example, Ford's commercial vehicle - which is continuously connected to the internet - can provide updated cloud-based map information to Digit.
"E-commerce is increasing, and we believe that robots will be able to help our commercial vehicle customers make the delivery of goods more efficient and affordable for all of us," said Vice President Ford Research and Advanced Engineering and Chief Technology Officer Ken Washington.
Digit is a real breakthrough for us. For the first time, we can offer a human-like robot that several customers can use in many industries, says Agility's CEO, Dr. Damion Shelton.
The Digit robot can carry up to 18 kilos at a time. It is designed so that it takes up little space to transport. When the vehicle arrives at the delivery point, Digit takes care of the last meters of the delivery - right to the door. If it encounters obstacles, Digit can - via the car - gain access to extra data power to solve this. As a result, the robot weighs little and uses little energy. It can therefore work long days without the need to recharge.
Digit must also be able to receive information about exactly where the customer wants the package delivered. Then, should it encounter problems along the way, it can ask for help via Ford's internet-connected vehicle.
Ford Motor Company and Agility Robotics entered a partnership to make goods delivery smoother.