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Meet Phoenix: The New Humanoid Robot

Phoenix, a humanoid robot standing at a height of five feet seven inches (5’7″) and weighing 155 pounds (70 kg), closely resembles the average human in stature. However, its intended purpose—to perform general tasks in various environments—is an ambitious undertaking for a robot.

The concept of humanoid assistants has been popularized in science-fiction narratives, but bringing them to life in the real world has proven to be a formidable challenge. While companies like Tesla have expressed interest in integrating humanoid robots into households, robots have traditionally excelled at executing specific tasks rather than performing a wide range of general functions.

What can a general-purpose robot do?

Founded in 2018, Sanctuary brings the world of artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics under one roof and has been striving to make a human-like brain and system that can complete tasks with the ease humans do.

Pheonix is the company’s sixth-generation humanoid with hands that have 20 degrees of freedom and can mimic the agility and refined manipulation capabilities of its human counterpart, Tech Crunch said in its report.

The humanoid has a payload capacity of up to 55 pounds (25 kg) and can travel at the speed of three miles (~five km) an hour, much like a regular human. It can also work at a retail store, just like a human.

In a pilot conducted in March this year, the humanoid was assigned to a retail store in Vancouver, where it performed 110 retail-related tasks at both the front and the back end of the store. This included picking and packaging merchandise, labeling, tagging, folding, and cleaning up the store.

Although the pilot lasted a week, the hero of the achievement is not the robot but the AI system that drives it. Sanctuary has dubbed its system Carbon and has designed it to perform the broadest set of tasks possible.

The Sanctuary is confident that while others build specific-use robots, robots that can perform general-purpose tasks will be ubiquitous as cars shortly and ready to step up when there aren’t enough people to do the job,

Emirates Introduces Sara, the World’s First Check-In Robot Assistant

Emirates airlines is revolutionizing the flight check-in process by introducing Sara, the world’s first check-in robot assistant. With a focus on enhancing user experience, the Dubai-based airline has launched a City Check-in and Travel Store, where passengers can seamlessly complete various pre-flight tasks, including booking their travel, checking in for their flights, shopping for travel essentials, and conveniently dropping off their luggage.

This innovative approach allows passengers to save valuable time and enjoy a more relaxed airport experience. With the option to complete check-in procedures up to 24 hours before their flight, travelers can arrive at the airport at a leisurely pace, eliminating the stress associated with last-minute check-ins.

Passengers visiting the City Check-in and Travel Store can choose between self-check-in at dedicated kiosks with the assistance of human agents or opt for Sara’s help, as stated in the airline’s press release. Sara, the check-in robot assistant, is designed to provide efficient and personalized support to passengers during the check-in process, offering a streamlined and user-friendly experience.

Emirates’ introduction of Sara represents a significant step towards leveraging technological advancements to simplify and enhance air travel. By embracing automation and robotics, the airline is at the forefront of transforming traditional check-in procedures, aiming to provide passengers with a seamless and convenient journey from start to finish.

As the world’s first check-in robot assistant, Sara embodies the spirit of innovation and customer-centricity that Emirates strives to deliver. The airline’s commitment to improving the passenger experience sets a new standard in the industry and demonstrates its dedication to embracing cutting-edge technologies that revolutionize air travel.

With Sara by their side, Emirates passengers can expect a more efficient, hassle-free check-in process, allowing them to focus on enjoying their journey from the moment they step foot in the City Check-in and Travel Store.

Emirates launches Sara, world’s first check-in robot assistant that can match faces with passports

An entirely new check-in experience

Sara has a wide LCD screen measuring 98 inches(2.5 meters) and is touch-friendly. Sara will be equipped to match the faces of customers with their passports, check passengers in, and guide them through to the luggage drop area.

Passengers can also ask Sara for expert advice and offer on trending destinations, while travel consultants can further assist in purchasing tickets for future journeys, managing upgrades, managing current bookings, selecting preferred seats, and arranging extra baggage, the statement reads.

Some reports say that the future versions of Sara will be more advanced and equipped with arms that can transport customers’ luggage.

“Emirates City Check-In is our latest addition to the Emirates travel experience, showing our commitment to providing customers with an array of check-in options. Our new location is the first ultra-convenient check-in and baggage drop facility conveniently located in the DIFC area. People can avoid busy periods at the airport and minimize queuing,” Adel al Redha, the Emirates’ COO, said in a statement.

Emirates is set to adopt and integrate AI into its services in a big way. Not a week ago, Emirates President Tim Clark hinted that the airline might have AI co-pilots very soon. “Artificial intelligence is set to have a big impact on the aviation industry, with one-pilot planes a possibility. You’ve got to take time to look at what this could do to improve what you do,” he said.

OpenAl Is Working on a Humanoid Robot

1X Technologies, a Norwegian start-up that specializes in the development of humanoid robots, has received a US$23.5 million investment from OpenAI, the developer of ChatGPT. The investment will allow the start-up to produce new androids on a commercial scale. Their latest project, a bipedal robot called NEO, is designed to accompany human workers in warehouse settings and help alleviate labor shortages.

NEO is intended to be autonomous and able to adapt to different environments. While there is no indication that it will be equipped with a ChatGPT-inspired form of intelligence, 1X Technologies may be able to draw on OpenAl’s expertise to improve Neo’s knowledge and performance.

The development of artificial intelligence and humanoid robots is an area where many cutting-edge projects are pushing new boundaries. There are already many projects underway, including the start-up Figure’s humanoid robot that combines human-like dexterity with artificial intelligence, Boston Dynamics’ Atlas robot that can handle heavy loads, Xiaomi’s CyberOne robot that can perceive 3D space and human gestures and emotions, and Tesla’s Optimus humanoid robot project.

With OpenAl’s investment, 1X Technologies may be able to develop NEO to be an advanced autonomous robot capable of adapting to different practical applications. While the competition is tough, the potential for innovation and advancement in this field is high.