As we’ve said in many articles, a new wave of investments in automation is already underway, could eliminate 20% to 25% of the current American workforce by 2030, or about 40 million jobs.
In the latest installment of robots plotting a takeover, we set our eyes on a Singapore-based firm called LionsBot International – who has developed an autonomous robot that can sing, rap, wink and even tell jokes while scrubbing floors, reported Yahoo.
The company debuted the robot at a live demonstration ceremony on July 17 at the Gardens by the Bay, a resort located in the Central Region of Singapore, adjacent to the Marina Reservoir.
About 300 of these robots will be produced by March 2020, will allow the company to be the first in the world to offer cleaning robots on a subscription model to clients.
Prospective and current clients can rent the robots at a rate of $1,350 to $2,150 per month.
As of last week, two of the robots have been deployed at National Gallery Singapore and Jewel Changi Airport in April, with more expected at other commercial facilities in the coming months.
LionsBot said at least six of its clients would deploy the robots early next year.
According to LionsBot, the cleaning robot is more efficient than a human and can work longer hours.
“Multiple cleaning robots are able to coordinate and clean a given area simultaneously, without the need for human programming,” the company said in a statement.
Besides regional demand, LionsBot has also received orders from companies based in Australia and Japan, said a company spokesperson, with the possible introduction to the US by 2021 to 2022.
LionsBot’s clients will be able to choose from 13 different types of robots including ones that scrub, mop, vacuum, and sweep across various terrains, effectively eliminating low wage cleaning jobs. Another version of the robot can also transport up to 1,000 pounds of equipment.
At the launch event at Gardens by the Bay, Senior Minister of State for the Ministry of Trade and Industry Koh Poh Koon said cleaning robots could raise productivity, adding that the government will continue to promote the proliferation of automation.
However, the trade minister made zero mention of the upcoming labor force shift due to automation, how hundreds of thousands of people across the region will be displaced because of robots in the years ahead.
More importantly, once these robots wash ashore in the US (maybe in the next few years), and most likely on the West Coast first, a tidal wave of job losses due to automation will be seen as corporate America continues to streamline their operations with technology to curb margin compression.