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1 Dec, 2023 05:17

Russian tech giant to expand robot fleet

Demand for delivery services by suitcase-sized driverless vehicles has been steadily growing, Yandex says
Russian tech giant to expand robot fleet

Russian technology major Yandex has announced plans to double its fleet of delivery robots next year from the current 130 units and to start renting them to other companies.

The suitcase-sized vehicle, called the Yandex.Rover, can autonomously navigate delivery routes on city sidewalks at a walking pace. It can recognize objects, plan the route, stop for pedestrians or animals, and avoid obstacles. Thanks to its lidar (light detection and ranging), the robot can even move confidently in the dark.

According to the company’s statement, Yandex is currently in talks with large supermarket chains, coffee shops, and fast-food restaurants. Among other promising customers, Yandex mentioned hotels and shops, residential blocks, creative clusters and university campuses. As part of its offer, the company will provide technical support and warranty service.

“About 15 delivery robots are enough to deliver food and groceries in a residential area with a population of 5,000 people,” the statement reads.

Launched in 2019, the buggy-like robots operate in Moscow, the Innopolis campus town in Russia’s Tatarstan Republic, Rosa Khutor and Krasnaya Polyana resorts in Sochi, as well as the city of Murino in Leningrad Region.

Delivery services are currently carried out by third-generation rovers, which were introduced in November 2021. This October, Yandex released a new batch of 50 third-generation robots, which deliver 87% of orders on time within 8-12 minutes.

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