App-Controlled Cobots Are After the Paycheck You Don't Want

ABB's new cobos can be controlled via an app 9 photos
Photo: ABB
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There are worse jobs out there than being cooked up in an office from 9 to 5. And we’re not talking here about those in mining or slaughterhouses. We’re talking about the ones that call on you to repeatedly perform the same task, over and over again, hundreds or perhaps thousands of times per day.
People hate these jobs, perhaps even more than mining. And this is not some general impression we got by hearing friends and such complain, but one backed by data.

According to a survey conducted not long ago on small businesses in Europe, U.S., and China by Swiss technology company ABB, people hate these jobs so much that they are not even considering them for a career, if it can be called that. 78 of the companies said they have real trouble finding the workforce they need.

Luckily, there are plenty of robots out there that can do the (whatever) job. Sadly, most of them require some programming skills, and not all business owners have that.

The ones we have here are generally called cobots. Named GoFa and SWIFTI, they were introduced this week by ABB as tools that can be operated with just a tablet or smartphone app. More importantly, they can be used right next to humans without having to be separated from them by fences and such.

GoFa comes with a 950-mm (37.4-in) reach, has a moving speed of 2.2 meters per second, and can handle loads of up to 5 kg (11 pounds). It’s packed with sensors that tell it to stop as soon as it detects an object it may impact or the human working next to it.

As for SWIFTI, it has been designed for payloads of up to 4 kg (8.8 pounds), can sense obstacles in its path as well, but is a lot faster, moving at 5 meters per second.

You can find more about these robots at this link.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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