Sanctuary AI’s general-purpose robots could fill manual jobs in manufacturing, retail and logistics

Berenice Baker, Editor

April 2, 2024

2 Min Read
Sanctuary AI's Phoenix general-purpose robot.
Sanctuary AI's Phoenix general-purpose robot uses the Carbon AI system.Sanctuary AI

Professional services multinational Accenture has made a strategic investment in Sanctuary AI, a Canada-based company that makes general-purpose, AI-powered humanoid robots.

According to Joe Lui, Accenture’s global advanced automation and robotics lead, AI-powered humanoid robots could meet a global labor shortage of human workers across several industries.

“We see huge potential for their robots in post and parcel, manufacturing, retail and logistics warehousing operations, where they could complement and collaborate with human workers and automate tasks that traditional robotics can’t,” said Lui.

Sanctuary AI’s control system, Carbon, trains the robots to react to their environment and quickly learn to perform new tasks precisely. According to the company, Carbon mimics subsystems found in the human brain, such as memory, sight, sound and touch, and translates natural language into action in the real world.

A video shows the company’s Phoenix general-purpose robot, which uses the Carbon system, sorting objects with human-like hands and dexterity.

Phoenix was recognized as one of Time magazine’s best inventions of 2023.  

In March 2023, Phoenix performed 101 retail-related tasks at a Mark’s retail store in Langley, BC, Canada. These included front and back-of-store activities such as picking and packing merchandise, cleaning, tagging, labeling and folding.

Related:AI Robotics Company Gives Robots ‘Human-Like’ Reasoning, Decision-Making Skills

Geordie Rose, chief executive officer and co-founder of Sanctuary AI, said robots with human-like intelligence would completely transform the future workforce.

“By combining Accenture’s expertise in disruptive technology with Sanctuary AI’s industry-leading robotics, we can help some of the biggest companies in the world manage this change and provide the best solutions for its clients,” said Rose.

Accenture has previously invested in robotics, including contributing to an $85 million funding round for warehouse robotics startup Mujin in September of 2023.

This article first appeared in AI Business's sister publication IoT World Today.

About the Author(s)

Berenice Baker

Editor, Enter Quantum

Berenice is the editor of Enter Quantum, the companion website and exclusive content outlet for The Quantum Computing Summit. Enter Quantum informs quantum computing decision-makers and solutions creators with timely information, business applications and best practice to enable them to adopt the most effective quantum computing solution for their businesses. Berenice has a background in IT and 16 years’ experience as a technology journalist.

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