Do you want robots working in your grocery stores?

ROBOTS THEY'RE HERE AND TAKING OVER THE WORLD! Not really...but to some it feels that way after robots have started making their way into local grocery stores and we're not talking about those self serve checkouts. Marty the Robot has been working here in Seekonk, MA in the local Stop & Shop there. He monitors the aisles for any spills. Marty looks like a tall grey skinny tower with googly eyes and behind those eyes there is actually a camera and someone watching through that robot's camera.

Marty the Robot

The question now is 1) Do you have a problem with seeing robots strolling the aisles with you? 2) How do you feel about the robot actually rolling film, potentially with you in it where there are people watching you shop? Apparently these robots have their film rolling back to a control center in the Philippines where someone their is monitoring the cameras and a live human has to confirm what the robot is picking up and then proceeds to trigger a message over the loudspeaker of the store. 

The company behind these robots is Badger Technologies and they have 25 robots out right now in Giant, Martin's and Stop & Shop stores. The plan is to roll out more as the year goes on and by the end of it there will be 172 in Giant stores alone.

The robots roll around using a laser and actually pause or stop when shoppers and carts walk across them so they are not mowing people down. The reason for these robots like Marty is to free up human employees to be able to better assist customers. Not to get all conspiratorial but do we not think the robots are scanning us and recording our interest in products in the stores, saving that info and marketing it to retailers or other companies? Facebook is not the only one data sharing! Now we have robots creeping on us in the grocery stores to do just that!

I wouldn't care about Marty if it was in house and not being streamed back to another location. Why can't there be a control center set up in store upstairs and hire an employee to monitor it? Why does it have to go to a control center in another country? That part is sketchy to me. It should be one software program per store and a log in for that software that is specifically for that store and then whatever robots you have, synced up to that. I don't like this outside control center. That's my problem with it, not the robots in the store. I don't care if it's robots or people cleaning up the aisles. It's the data sharing possibilities!

 

What are your thoughts?

-Producer Lightning

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