Aug 13, 2018

The world is talking about the usage of hi-tech robots in service sectors and India has already started to work in this direction. Not only well established companies but also entrepreneurs and start-ups are trying their hand at creating their very own innovative robot for a wide range of service sectors.

The Indian domestic airline, Vistara Airlines has recently launched its robot called ‘Rada’. The robot is the first of its kind in the country and will help out passengers at the airport by responding to their queries. Equipped with three built-in cameras and voice technology that enable the robot to interact with customers, Rada has been designed in a simple manner by mounting it on a four-wheeled chassis with 360-degree rotation.

The robot has been created under Vistara’s Innovation Initiative by a team of engineers at the Tata Innovation Lab. From July 5, 2018 onwards, one can find Rada in action at Delhi Airport’s Vistara’s Signature Lounge.

Robots by start-ups

The start-up firm, emotix developed India’s first companion robot named ‘Miko’. Produced by three students at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT-B), the user-friendly robot weighs around 750 grams and stands a little over a foot. Costing just 280 dollars, it is a great medium for educating and entertaining kids above the age of five. The friendly robot also responds to non-verbal cues such as motion and physical gestures to incorporate emotions.

Last year, a 5 foot Made in India robot – Mitra greeted the Prime Minister of India and Ivanka Trump, daughter of US President Donald Trump at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES). Developed by Bengaluru-based start-up Invento Robotics, Mitra is programmed to greet customers and interacts using facial and speech recognition, contextual help, and autonomous navigation.

The robot is also serving humans in a few Indian banks along with a few cinema outlets in Bengaluru. Mitra is also given on rent for interactive sessions at offices, hotels, and even private birthday parties.

Robotic collaborations

Apart from the hardcore industrial sectors, there are various other sectors of the Indian industry that are collaborating with global robotic players to ease their operations. For instance, the Danish industrial collaborative robot maker Universal Robots has tied up with Germany-headquartered G+D(Gieseck + Devrient) to make cobots available in the banking sector to speed up efficiency and save time. G+D is a prominent player in the bank-note processing in India and has been closely working with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) since 2005.

Experts state that the processing capacity of each cobot is 10–12 banknotes per second, which means that it can process more than 30,000 bank notes per hour. This will enable humans to work side by side with compact robots and work smoothly to improve the productivity of the organisation. As of now, G+D India is planning to use cobots in at least 400 currency chests for ‘pick and place’ processes in the next two years.

With so many innovations on the move, it won’t be surprising to witness robots at most commercial spaces in India.


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