THE WHAT? Alibaba’s Cloud arm gave the world a preview of the future of digital at its 12th annual Apsara Conference. The technology pioneer unveiled its first Cloud Computer and an autonomous logistics robot for last-mile deliveries.
THE DETAILS The former weighs just 60 grams and can be connected with a normal screen to access almost unlimited computing resources anytime, anywhere.
The delivery robot, meanwhile, was developed by the Alibaba DAMO Academy and can carry 50 packages at once, and cover 62 miles on a single charge. The Chinese tech giant is estimating that the mobile robot should be able to deliver up to 500 packages a day to one designated community or campus.
THE WHY? Both innovations were motivated by the pandemic, and our changing working and consumption patterns. The Cloud Computer will enable users to access resilient computing power whenever they need to, meaning complex tasks such as animation rendering, software development and online customer services can be carried out on the go. As Jeff Zhang, President of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence, attests, “As working from home becomes the new normal during and after the pandemic, we believe our innovation can also help users more easily enjoy the benefits of cloud computing anytime, anywhere, in a cost-effective yet secure way.”
“We are expecting a rapid spike of delivery demands brought by the thriving New Retail and local services businesses in the increasingly digitalized world,” Zhang added, referencing the logistics robot.