Amazon launches robotic arm which can handle ‘millions of diverse products’

Amazon has unveiled a new robotic system which can move individual products before they are put into packaging and sent out to customers.

Amazon said the robotic arm would take on repetitive tasks allowing employees to focus on other tasks. Called Sparrow, the online retailer said that it would improve safety as well as efficiency.

The announcement comes as the e-commerce giant revealed a slowdown in growth for the upcoming holiday season, in a move which wiped nearly 20 per cent off the company’s value.

Sparrow, which joins Amazon’s existing robotic arms ‘Robin’ and ‘Cardinal’, uses AI and computer vision to recognise and handle millions of items. Sparrow joins Amazon’s existing robotic arms, called Robin and Cardinal.

Amazon said: “In our focus on robotics, we knew we had an opportunity to dig deeper into research and development to support individual product handling.”

The retailer added: “We have millions of products of all shapes and sizes in our inventory, and we recognised the opportunity to invent new technology that could help handle them at Amazon’s scale.”

Amazon said the design and deployment of robotics has created 700 categories of new jobs across its operations.

Amazon recently partnered with Snap, allowing customers to virtually try on eyewear before purchasing.

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