Top AI Robotics Companies with Amazing Robots

Last Updated on February 22, 2020 by Henry John

AI systems will not come off as AIs to the average person, who watched the Terminator movie series or EX Machina, except they are robots.

And this was true even for me years back (perhaps am a little above average now).

I first heard about AIs from the movies, and in those days when my knowledge of AIs was limited to what I see and hear in the movies, whenever I hear ‘Artificial intelligence’, my thoughts darts towards intelligent human-like robots (humanoids).

Over time I have come to realize that artificial intelligence is a complex technology that is not limited to its application in robotics.

Nonetheless, autonomous cars and AI robots gets me the most excited about AI today.

Hence, I have kept my tabs on the developed of AI in those areas.
There are a lot of Robotic companies who like me (and perhaps you) believes that AI and robots have a significant role to play in our future (the future of humanity).

These companies are developing amazing AI Robots (humanoid and non-humanoid). Some already have their AI robots available on sale and others are making giant strides with their prototype developmental efforts.

In this article am going to talk about three AI Robotics Companies and their amazing robots. Let’s dive in:

 

Hanson Robotics

Hanson Robotics have been around for 7 years now and what they have achieved with just 45 employees is impressive.

Founded in Texas, the company relocated to Hong Kong in 2013. Hanson Robotics has won numerous awards for their exploits in the development of interactive humanoid robots. They won the Gold Medal for the 2018 Edison innovation awards.

Hanson Robotics is an AI and Robotic company dedicated to developing artificially intelligent social robots. They have developed some famous humanoid robots including Albert HUBO, BINA 48 and most notably Sophia.

Sophia stands out as their best work ever, so far. And ‘she’ is truly amazing and inspiring.

 

Sophia

Sophia is a social humanoid robot (possibly the most advanced in the world with relation to its interactive ability), that have made numerous public appearances since its activation on February, 14, 2016.

Perhaps I should refer to ‘it’ as ‘her’, because she not only look and talk like a human being, she (it) is the first robot to become a citizen of a country, literally.

In October, 2017, Sophia was formally declared a citizen of Saudi Arabia.

Sophia is also the first non-human to be named an Innovation Champion by United Nations Developmental Programme.

She takes the resemblance of what most average people expect an AI to be: A Human-like Intelligent Robot.

Sophia as earlier mentioned has made numerous public appearances. She appeared in the Today show, Tonight show, and Good Morning Britain.

This amazing work of Hanson Robotics is an amazing creation even though some of her words are not a result of her AI and are human-generated.

She depicts what the future of AI and Humanoid holds with relation to human-robot interactions.

https://youtu.be/G-zyTlZQYpE

 

 

 

Boston Dynamics

Boston Dynamics is a Big Dog in Robotics, best known for the development of Big Dog. Those line of words sounds too Big Doggy, right?

They have been around for over 23 years and have seen the money and other form of support from DARPA, Google and now Softbank.

About Big Dog. Big Dog is a quadruped military robot created in 2005 and funded by DARPA. It was developed to serve as a robotic pack mule to accompany soldiers in rough terrains and its development was discontinued because it was deemed to be too noisy for use in combat.

Big Dog runs on a gas powered engine, hence, the noise. It gave rise to a Battery-powered Spot as a result, and Spot is an amazing four legged robot, one that gets me really excited.

Boston Dynamics are not just about Big Dog anyways.

They are not just a big dog in the robotics industry for developing Big Dog, they have developed a lot of robots and currently their top three are Atlas (a humanoid robot and my favorite), Handler (a robot for moving boxes in a warehouse) and of course, Spot (the predecessor of Big Dog).

All three are truly amazing. I intended putting Spot on the spotlight but I can’t ignore Atlas, which is a different robotic beast from Hanson Robotics’ Sophia.

So sorry Spot, Atlas gets in the spotlight.

Atlas

Atlas is a humanoid robot developed to be functional rather than artistic (like Sophia). It was designed to carry out a variety search and rescue tasks. It is yet another Boston Dynamics project funded by DARPA.

When Atlas was tested (or should I say participated) in the 2015 DARPA competition on Robotics, it was able to complete all eight tasks that it could likely carryout in search and rescue operations in the real world.

The tasks are as follows:

  • Drive a utility vehicle at the site
  • Use a tool to break through concrete panel
  • Travel across rubble dismounted
  • Open a door and enter a building (easy)
  • Climb an industrial ladder and transverse an industrial walkway
  • Locate and close a valve near a leaking pipe
  • Remove debris blocking an entryway
  • And connect a firehose to a standpipe and turn on a valve

Gary Bradski, a specialist in AI, declared that “a new species, Robo Sapiens, are emerging” when Atlas was first unveiled in 2013.

Unfortunately, when the CEO of Boston Dynamics, Raibert Marc was asked in 2019, if Atlas will ever ship, “I don’t think so” He replied.

“Atlas is a prototype and is still considered ‘the future’ of Boston Dynamics robots. Atlas is the future because it’s always in the prototype stage” Marc said.

The future of Atlas will be amazing and groundbreaking, when you put into consideration what it is able to do today. Then it’s simple to see that its future holds a lot of promise.

Atlas has been showed in a series of YouTube videos, jumping on boxes, turning 1800 while jumping, performing backflips, performing gymnastics floor routine (somersaults, handstand and rotation in fluid succession), and running across grass on an uneven terrain.

Incredibly!

Sitting here and writing this piece, something just keeps running around my thoughts.

Imagine Atlas and Sophia put together as one system, one AI robot.
I pass the imagination on to you.

Agility Robotics

Agility Robotics is a robotic company founded in 2015. They are a relatively smaller company when compared to Boston Dynamics.

However, having followed their work closely last year, I could tell they are going places.

[Video: Agility Robotics 2019 Year in Review]

In 2020, Agility Robotics put Digit (their most promising work) up for sale and guess the first customer to come knocking?

Ford Motors.

Early January, 2020 Ford (the Automaker) became the first customer to incorporate Agility Robotics’ Robot (Digit) into their factory.

Agility Robotics displayed two pre-production prototypes of the robot in Ford’s Booth at CES 2020.

I love Digit, even though my only point of contact with it has been through a series of YouTube videos about its developmental progress.

 

Digit

Digit is a humanoid robot designed for mobile manipulation and sensing in real world’s environment. It is powered with autonomous features that allow it to work with and alongside humans.

Need it to go up a stairs? No problem.

Digit is able to deliver boxed packages while navigating stairs, obstacles and the diverse variety of terrains found in real world.
Like Atlas, Digit is built for functionality, from the ground up.

 

Wrap Up

AI and robotics are destined for each other. Their development has journeyed a long way and still have a long way to go.

However, the results/signs are truly promising.

Sophia, Atlas and Digit are proof. Amazing robots that can do amazing things, things we once declared doable by humans only.

The future of artificial intelligence is perhaps strongly AI and Robotics or should I say AI Robots.

6 thoughts on “Top AI Robotics Companies with Amazing Robots”

  1. Hello Henry,
    Your enthusiasm for tech stock analysis is contagious.I am such a novice to the whole stock market experience, yet your passion finds me enthusiastically reading every word of your incredibly depth -filled research.
    Thank you so very much for sharing your great knowledge with me. I even purchased two stocks ,one Robotic and the other Cloud Storage.They are already up 18% and 32% respectively. (WOW)
    Most Sincerely and Respectfully,
    Bob Walsh

    Reply
    • Thrilled to hear from you. And if I may, which stocks are you referring to? And how long are you looking to hold onto them?

      Reply
      • Hi Henry,
        Hope all is well with you.!!!
        I purchased 200 Microbot Medical-MBOT-now up over 23% and 100 BOX-up almost 40%. This is very exciting for me (one more WOW !!! ) I would consider selling BOX if it gets near $25.00 and MBOT near 14 or 15. This is the fastest appreciation I’ve ever experienced. Thanking you Always for giving me the opportunity to make so much so quickly. And I realize that stocks can go into reverse also, but I am more than comfortable with the risk/reward ratio ,so If they ever really drop in price,I can handle it.
        Because of your detailed positive ERIC report,I bought 75 shares of Ericsson today,getting a good price shortly after the opening . I can for-see possibly holding ERIC for years to come.
        Thanks again and always Henry,
        God Bless,
        Bob

        Reply
        • First of all, I’m very sorry for not replying sooner.
          Like always, Bob, I’m thrilled to hear from you.
          On a YTD basis, MBOT has performed poorly TBH, it’s currently trading around $7.5 and it’s really not a stock to hold for long. The trick is to buy low and wait patiently for a good run, then sell.
          BOX, on the other hand, has had a decent year, starting at $12.90 and currently trades at $17.54, they’re scheduled to deliver their next quarterly report by December 1st. They’ve managed to beat expectations in their past four quarters and I expect them to do the same come December. I’d hold BOX beyond December but then if it hits $25 around that period, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with you cashing out.
          Cheers, Bob.
          P.S. The Stock market is tricky, heck! But that’s the fun of it. I love the mess.

          Reply
  2. Hi Henry,
    So nice to hear from you also ! Hope and trust all is even better than well.I’m in an especially good mood,so I’m going to share a joke that I just heard and like.
    A guy has a terrible hearing loss problem,but for years only complains. Finally,giving in to continued loss,he proudly buys a brand new,state of the art,very expensive hearing aid. While bragging about its greatness ,that it’s the very best ever made, has no equal and never will,he is asked “what kind is it?” He replies 12:30.
    Later Henry,
    God Bless and Happy Thanksgiving,
    Bob
    P.S. Thank you,and I will follow your advice.

    Reply

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