Rise of the machines: 12 Chinese robots taking over our everyday jobs

January 24, 2018
Industry News
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Staff Reporter

Receptionists, criminals, doctors – robots are taking on all shapes and sizes to aid us in our everyday jobs

As machine automation and artificial intelligence gain prominence in our lives, everyone from technological universities to surprisingly tech-savvy criminals seem to want in on the action. 

From potentially life-saving robots (think medical and dental), to lawbreaking ones made by a tout and online fraudsters, the machines are on the rise as we enter 2018.

1. Chinese dating apps shut after ‘sexy girl’ chats found to be run by robots

Police shut down a variety of dating apps in China after it was discovered that the “sexy girls” advertised for customers to chat with were actually artificial intelligence computer programs. The cases involved hundreds of thousands of customers and the fraud amounted to more than 1 billion yuan (US$154 million). More than 600 suspects have been arrested. Other scams involved customers paying to watch videos with sexual content, but they were unable to load and view the films.

2. Chinese firm halves worker costs by hiring army of robots to sort out 200,000 packages a day

Behind-the-scenes footage of a self-charging robot army in a delivery warehouse was shared on People’s Daily’s social media accounts in April 2017. The video showed dozens of round orange Hikvision robots – each the size of a seat cushion – swivelling across the floor of a sorting centre of Chinese delivery powerhouse Shentong (STO) Express. The machines can sort up to 200,000 packages a day and are self-charging, meaning they can operate around the clock.

3. China sends underwater robots in race against time to plug leaking oil tanker

Roughly a quarter of China’s ammunition factories have replaced workers with robots or begun to do so – which means the country’s bomb and shell production capacity could treble in less than a decade. These “smart machines” can assemble sophisticated ammunition and are five times as productive as a human worker.
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