Verizon and incubed IT have entered into a definitive agreement under which the carrier will acquire the firm, which provides tools to manage mixed fleets of robots in industrial settings.
The Austrian-based company’s software products will complement Verizon’s 5G and mobile edge compute (MEC) capabilities to enable its customers build their autonomous mobile robot fleets. incubed IT’s products enable robots “to localize” and navigate autonomously. They can easily be integrated into almost any mobile robot, Verizon said.
The product family includes:
- The Smart Shuttle Navigation Toolkit transmits near real-time data to navigate autonomous mobile robots (AMRs)
- The Fleet Management Server manages AMR fleet and routing operations
- The Data Monitoring & Analytics element provides near real-time monitoring and advanced reporting
“Mobile robot orchestration is a real and emerging challenge faced by enterprises today,” Verizon Chief Strategy Officer Rima Qureshi said in a press release. “By integrating incubed IT’s autonomous software with Verizon’s 5G platform, we will have the ability to power robotic automation at scale. This will create new opportunities for enterprise customers to better and more effectively monitor and optimize their business processes.”
The deal is expected to close during the first half of the year. The press release provided no financial details. incubed IT personnel will join the Verizon New Business Incubation team.
Robotics is evolving quickly and promises to have a broad set of use cases. It is clear that efficient and sophisticated management tools will be necessary to ensure regulatory compliance and enable customers to take advantage of all potential benefits.
Robotics clearly is on Verizon’s roadmap.
In April 2020, robotics use at distribution centers was cited as a potential use case for hyper-precise edge technology from Real Time Kinematics (RTK) that Verizon is using. The main use case cited, however, is autonomous vehicles.
In January 2020, Verizon named the winners of its “Built on 5G Challenge.” The third place finisher was LexSet. The company, which won $250,000, generates synthetic image data from 3D content to train high-performance computer vision AI. It will use Verizon 5G to enable advances in mixed reality, robotics, and inventory management.