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Automating the Supply Chain

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Automating the Supply Chain

5G networks and new autonomous robots and vehicles will help optimize warehouse management.

Key Insight

5G networks and new autonomous robots and vehicles will help optimize warehouse management.

Why It Matters

Autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) and autonomous guided vehicles (AGVs) will become more commonplace in 2020, which will bring cost-savings and efficiencies for businesses.

Examples

For the past few decades, robots have assisted humans with repetitive tasks. But in 2020, we will see a new class of autonomous robots and vehicles running on A.I.-powered logistics systems. Rather than relying on LiDAR SLAM (Simultaneous Localization And Mapping), a new class of robots use computer vision and A.I. In a warehouse setting, autonomous mobile robots assign global tasks, set paths and optimize tasks like picking. Amazon Robotics, which acquired Kiva Systems in 2012, leads the market in automated robots and now relies on a host of automated systems in its warehouses.

What’s Next

Now in the midst of a transformation, the robotics industry will drastically impact the supply chain. Some researchers anticipate that 6 million mobile robots will be shipped within the next decade, shifting every sector of the global economy.

The Impact

Mobile automation in the supply chain is a quickly maturing market. While this means greater efficiencies and cost savings for businesses, it also portends job losses for workers who operate warehouse equipment.

Watchlist

Amazon Robotics, Boston Dynamics, Kuka Robotics, Mobile Industrial Robots, Okura, Omron, Rethink Robots, Robotic Industries Association, Universal Robots.