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WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF

Covid-19 has been a big boost for robots, and now they’re taking over coffee shops.

 

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The current Coronavirus pandemic, Covid-19, has been a boon for the rapid testing and development of a whole new raft of exponential technologies, from AI’s that are helping find vaccines and drones being used to identify infected people, through to robots being used to look after patients in hospitals and self-driving cars being used to make vital food deliveries. Now though, as the world dares to think about coming out of lock down businesses are having to think about how they can open their doors, comply with social distancing rules, and help prevent the spread of the virus.

 

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Businesses in South Korea are a case in point, and as the country opens back up again they’ve been getting creative to ensure their customers are safe, and as a case in point a café in Daejon has just hired a robot barista to take care of making and busing drinks around, Reuters reports.

 

See the Robo-Barista in action
 

Thanks to the robot, the café only has to employ a single human, who takes care of making pastries, as well as servicing and refilling their robot co-worker. The robot can make 60 different types of coffee and deliver them to customers around the café.

The company behind the robot, Vision Semicon, is hoping its fleet of mechanical workers could help while South Korean society adjusts to what officials are calling “distancing in daily life” — the next phase of the government’s efforts to relax social distancing rules.

 

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“Our system needs no input from people from order to delivery, and tables were sparsely arranged to ensure smooth movements of the robots, which fits in well with the current ‘distancing campaign,” Lee Dong-bae, director of research at Vision Semicon, told Reuters.

The downside of all these trials and tests though means that automation systems like these, after the pandemic has subsided, could become the norm, and in South Korea’s case push their unemployment rates, which in April saw its largest increase since 1999, even higher.

Source: Reuters

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Matthew Griffin

Matthew Griffin, described as “The Adviser behind the Advisers” and a “Young Kurzweil,” is the founder and CEO of the World Futures Forum and the 311 Institute, a global Futures and Deep Futures consultancy working between the dates of 2020 to 2070, and is an award winning futurist, and author of “Codex of the Future” series. Regularly featured in the global media, including AP, BBC, Bloomberg, CNBC, Discovery, RT, Viacom, and WIRED, Matthew’s ability to identify, track, and explain the impacts of hundreds of revolutionary emerging technologies on global culture, industry and society, is unparalleled. Recognised for the past six years as one of the world’s foremost futurists, innovation and strategy experts Matthew is an international speaker who helps governments, investors, multi-nationals and regulators around the world envision, build and lead an inclusive, sustainable future. A rare talent Matthew’s recent work includes mentoring Lunar XPrize teams, re-envisioning global education and training with the G20, and helping the world’s largest organisations envision and ideate the future of their products and services, industries, and countries. Matthew's clients include three Prime Ministers and several governments, including the G7, Accenture, Aon, Bain & Co, BCG, Credit Suisse, Dell EMC, Dentons, Deloitte, E&Y, GEMS, Huawei, JPMorgan Chase, KPMG, Lego, McKinsey, PWC, Qualcomm, SAP, Samsung, Sopra Steria, T-Mobile, and many more.

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