Reply launched a new platform to manage Autonomous Mobile Robots via Microsoft Azure
Autonomous robots - more precisely AMR, Autonomous Mobile Robots - are the future of... well, many things, according to a lot of analysts. ResearchAndMarkets.com for example estimates that the global market for Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) and AMR will reach $13.2 Billion by 2026 with a growth rate of around 35%. Both AGVs and AMRs collectively are going to cross the installed base of 1.5 Million in the next 5 years to make mobile robots a new normal in our day-to-day operational activities.
The problem? Developing solutions based on AMR platforms is never easy, because there are a lot of software components to integrate, customize and adapt for each and every vertical application. Standardization an comprehensive plaform are sorely needed here. That's why Italian company Reply developed an end-to-end solution architecture for AMR, based on Microsoft Azure cloud services.
The solution combines Microsoft Azure services, the agility of Boston Dynamics' SPOT and Reply’s knowledge of intelligent cloud computing services, edge computing and artificial intelligence. Reply's platform has already been put to work in a real case: an automated vehicle-damage-detection solution for rental or leasing companies. Instead of manually inspecting vehicles for any damage after they are returned, these companies can delegate the job to SPOT robots.
Using computer vision, SPOT moves freely through the parking area and scans the license plates to find the right vehicle. Once detected, it walks around the vehicle to record its condition by continuously collecting visual data with its camera and sensors. This information is processed “on the edge” or transmitted to the cloud, where advanced image recognition and machine leaning algorithms perform the damage detection. All detected damages are saved in the return protocol, and they can be presented to the customer and the fleet manager for approval.