Amazon launched a warehouse robot that can pick up and categorize millions of individual unpackaged goods. The development will automate various jobs as the e-commerce giant is under pressure to reduce logistics costs.

According to the organization, the Sparrow robot is the first to be able to find, select, and manipulate specific objects in warehouses, a duty formerly reserved for Amazon warehouse workers. The robot arm uses computer vision technology to detect and retrieve small items. It was introduced on Thursday at a Boston event.

Amazon is in ‘uncharted waters’

The e-commerce giant said that the bot will “benefit” its staff, who, according to Amazon, can now focus on less monotonous activities in the company’s warehouses. The organization has reportedly created 700 new “categories” of professions relating to robots.

The warehouse bot’s launch comes as Amazon is under pressure to slash expenses in its online retail segment. Despite being the foundation of Jeff Bezos’ empire, the segment failed to grow in 2022.

Last month, the business warned that consumer spending is in “uncharted waters.” It announced sales forecasts that fell far short of Wall Street expectations, becoming the latest major tech company to warn investors of slowing growth and rising expenses.

Cutting back costs

Amazon’s growth ambitions were thwarted due to poor retail performance. At least 50 US warehouses have been either suspended or decommissioned. Its staff decreased from 1.62 million in March to 1.54 million at the end of September.

This year, Amazon said it would reduce its logistics spending by $10 billion. Amazon recently announced a temporary halt in hiring as part of a larger cost-cutting strategy, while simultaneously slashing other technological units.

The e-commerce giant brought robots to its warehouses in 2012, when it acquired Kiva for $775 million. This company developed a drive mechanism capable of carrying racking stacks throughout a defined space.

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