Walmart said it will roll out about 250 autonomous floor-scrubbing robots by the end of January, adding to the 100 or so robots already in operation at the retail giant. The new machines will be placed in certain stores during this expanded test with San Diego-based Brain Corp., who makes the robots.
Walmart’s BrainOS-powered floor scrubbers allow store employees to quickly map a route during an initial training ride and then activate autonomous floor cleaning with the press of a button. The robot uses multiple sensors to scan its surroundings for people and obstacles, providing a high level of safety and performance.
“We’re excited to work with Brain Corp. in supporting our retail operations and providing our associates with a safe and reliable technology,” said John Crecelius, Walmart’s vice president of central operations. “BrainOS is a powerful tool in helping our associates complete repetitive tasks so they can focus on other tasks within their role and spend more time serving customers.”
The company said the robots can operate on their own and maneuver around customers as needed. It’s possible Walmart may also be collecting consumer data with these robots as they are equipped with sensors that allow them to collect and upload data.
“We are thrilled to partner with Walmart to enhance customer experience at its retail locations,” said Eugene Izhikevich, CEO of Brain Corp. “BrainOS technology allows robots to effectively and safely function in complex, crowded environments, ensuring increased productivity and efficiency across applications. We look forward to continuing to work alongside Walmart to help build intelligent, connected stores.”