Ocado teaches robots to talk over 4G
World’s largest online-only grocery retailer develops 4G-based protocol to communicate with thousands of robots powering its new automated warehouses
Today Ocado is revealing more details about the 4G-based wireless protocol used to control the robots powering its new warehouses. These highly-automated warehouses will be offered as part of a managed service called the Ocado Smart Platform which enables international partners to build scalable, sustainable and profitable online retail businesses.
The protocol marks the first deployment anywhere in the world to use the unlicensed 4G spectrum for warehouse automation and guarantees a connection ten times per second to each of the 1,000+ robots roaming around the warehouse – all working within a 150 meter radius.
While building a robot can be a relatively straightforward task, creating a swarm of thousands of robots and making sure you can communicate with every single in a tenth of a second is a whole different ball game. We have worked closely with Cambridge Consultants to develop an innovative system that takes advantage of modern wireless communications principles but has secret ingredients that tailor it to our specific environment. Since the protocol works in the license-free spectrum, we can also deploy it at a moment’s notice in any location around the world. – Adam Green, wireless team leader at Ocado
Moreover, the wireless protocol can be repurposed for other IoT applications that mandate reduced communications delay between many devices: vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity for smart cars, air traffic control systems or large scale industrial systems.
For more details, please visit this blog article.
Established in 2000, Ocado is a UK-based company admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange (OCDO), and is the world’s largest dedicated online grocery retailer, operating its own grocery and general merchandise retail businesses under the Ocado.com and other specialist shop banners. For more information about the Ocado Group, visit www.ocadogroup.com
About Ocado Technology
Ocado Technology is a division of Ocado developing world-class systems and solutions in the areas of robotics and automation, artificial intelligence, big data, cloud, IoT, and more. The fusion between the Ocado retail and Ocado Technology divisions creates a virtuous circle of innovation that leads to disruptive thinking. For more information about Ocado Technology, visit www.ocadotechnology.com