The chief executive of telecommunications giant SoftBank says the effects of artificial intelligence will take the world much further and have a more profound effect than even the industrial revolution.
In an article accompanying a special edition of the CBS news magazine 60 Minutes, SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son was quoted as saying the new “information revolution” is being partly driven by data collected through billions of sensors.
SoftBank has been buying up a variety of AI and robotics startups, most recently a company called Nauto, which is developing systems for driverless cars.
At the root of the technology, Son says, are microprocessors and microcontrollers. “Those who rule chips will rule the entire world,” he said. “Those who rule data will rule the entire world. That’s what people of the future will say.”
Brain Corp, an artificial intelligence company specializing in the development of self-driving technology for robots, has raised $114 million in a Series C funding round led by the SoftBank Vision Fund.
Brain has developed AI and self-driving technology to enable robots to perceive their environment, learn to control their motion, and navigate using visual cues and landmarks while avoiding people and obstacles.
Japanese communications giant SoftBank is to acquire ARM Holdings for £24.3 billion, according to a report on the Financial Times website.
SoftBank has been on something of a spending spree in recent years and is looking to raise its profile in markets outside of Asia, where it is already well-known.
The company is particularly interested in computer technology –including artificial intelligence, robotics and automation — and the proposed takeover of ARM would seem to fit into this plan. Continue reading SoftBank to buy ARM
Japanese people may have become somewhat accustomed to the sight of a robot greeting them when they enter a store or some such place since robots have been employed as receptionists in Japan for some time now.
However, Europe is catching up, with new reports of two separate instances of robots being employed as receptionists.
In one report, the Guardian highlights the employment of Pepper, the SoftBank robot, now greeting visitors and patients at hospitals in Liege and Ostend, in Belgium.
In another report, the Telegraph showcases Betty the robot, who is employed managing an office in Milton Keynes, UK. Developed by the Strands Project, Betty may not be as aesthetically pleasing as Pepper, but she has more responsibilities, such as checking to see if staff are working late and if doors are closed and so on.
In the future, all customer relations could be managed by robots. That’s what science fiction films have been telling us for decades. And now, perhaps more than ever, that vision is becoming more real than ever.
As part of a newly announced collaboration with SoftBank Robotics to reimagine the future of digital customer interactions, Accenture Interactive demonstrated a new prototype based on the Pepper robot in Paris at Pepper Partners Europe event during InnoRobo (May 24-26), one of the world’s largest robotics events.
Pepper is the ground-breaking humanoid robot with the ability to read emotions that was developed by Softbank Robotics (previously Aldebaran Robotics) and first introduced in Japan in 2014.
Cruise liner company Costa Group has signed an exclusive agreement with the French company Aldebaran for a pilot project with Pepper robots.
Aldebaran, which is a subsidiary of the SoftBank Group through SoftBank Robotics Corp, said the contract was worth more than a million euros.
Pepper is the world’s first robot that reads main human emotions, says the company, adding that it is ideally suited to help and delight guests on board of cruise ships. Aldebaran adds that Pepper will improve guest experience and provide help and entertainment on board the ships of the Costa Group’s cruise brands: AIDA and Costa. Continue reading Costa Group to test Pepper humanoid robots on cruise liners