Agility Robotics, a robotics company that originated out of Oregon State University, has announced it’s advanced two-legged humanoid robot is officially on sale, and Ford is among the first to receive theirs.
The robot, aptly named Digit, is a human-sized robot capable of lifting packages weighing up to 18 kg (40 pounds). It is able to navigate environments with the help of LIDAR technology and other navigation sensors. According to Agility Robotics Digit can be used for a variety of different jobs including industrial inspections, logistics, package delivery, and telepresence.
— Agility Robotics (@agilityrobotics) December 23, 2019
On 5 January, Ford announced they will receive the first two “Digits” to roll off the production line, though neither company disclosed what Digit cost. Last July, Ford released a Youtube video showcasing Digit stepping out of the back of a van to deliver a parcel to someone’s door, navigating obstructions along the way to show how Digit and Autonomous cars could work together.
Digit is not the first autonomous robot to be developed by Agility Robotics. In 2017 the robotics company released a bipedal robot called Cassie capable of walking around up and down staircases. To develop Digit, Agility Robotics built upon the work they did with Cassie by adding an upper torso, new sensors, advanced computing, and two arms so it can pick up objects and move around.
“As online retailing continues growing, we believe robots will help our commercial customers build stronger businesses by making deliveries more efficient and affordable for all of us. We learned a lot this year working with Agility, now we can accelerate our exploratory work with commercial Digit robots,” said Ford CTO Ken Washington in a statement.