Marty, a rather peculiar looking robot, was recently spotted perusing the
aisles of a Giant Food Store in Lower Paxton Township, Harrisburg, PA.
The store’s reasoning behind Marty’s appearance? According
to Ahold USA, Giant Food Stores’ parent company, the robot is part
of a test program designed to prevent trip/slip and fall accidents.
According to Patrick Maturo, manager of store optimization for Ahold USA,
“the robot can report out information and data that is a value,
not only to us as a business, but to our customers.” The battery-powered
robot is equipped with scanners to prevent him from crashing into shoppers
and various displays, and several internal cameras which allow him to
reach about three-fourths of a standard grocer aisle. The robot’s
main job is to scan for hazardous conditions on the floor, such as smashed
grapes or spilled milk.
One thing Maturo says the robot will not do is replace employees. “Marty
can’t do the work that the associates do, so Marty is doing assistant
work.” It remains the store associates’ responsibility to
clean up any hazardous condition reported by Marty. Nationwide, other
retailers including Target, Amazon, and Wal-Mart, are also testing and
using robots like Marty.
Source and Photo Credit: Pennlive.com
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