Telefónica showcases the power of 5G for connected robotics


Telefónica, in collaboration with Macco Robotics, Bee the Data by ImmersiveLab and Raventós Codorníu, presents, in the framework of the Mobile World Congress (MWC), the demonstration ‘5G Bartender’, which increases the capabilities of robots, in this case a bartender, with new functions in mobility and in real time.

Thanks to Telefónica’s 5G connectivity and Edge Computing, the robot with bartender functions incorporates capabilities such as customer recognition or the understanding of many different languages.

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Macco Robotics’ hospitality robot, named Kime, is presented with an innovative design that has several integrated functionalities such as, for example, serving three types of drinks (juices, wines or cocktails), among which you can taste those offered by Raventós Codorníu through its innovative ‘Raimat Wine on Tap’ system, specifically designed for these environments.

Its capabilities are enhanced thanks to 5G connectivity, which incorporates the facial recognition of Bee the Data by ImmersiveLab to offer a personalised service to registered customers along with more potential functionalities, always in real time, such as demographic characteristics associated with users, capacity, waiting time in the queue, warnings for crowds or identifying specific peaks of high demand or supply needs, among others.

Also using 5G and Edge Computing, the multilingual function is integrated, giving it the capacity to reply in several languages when greeting customers, respond to their orders and offer recommendations in the language that the customer has previously selected.

High added-value technology at the service of companies

Kime, the vending robot, enriched with the use of Telefónica’s 5G technology, is another step forward in the humanisation of vending machines and in improving their services. A practical use case would be when there are specific moments of high demand, such as during breaks in football matches, or in places where demand is very irregular. Thanks to this type of solution, it is possible to meet this demand by using different types of robots that can even be controlled remotely.

In addition, it allows for very exhaustive quality control throughout the service, as it has artificial vision cameras that allow the quality of the prepared product to be controlled in real time. The use of 5G and Edge Computing makes it possible to add extra functionality to the robot with minimal effort, speeding up the innovation cycle and the testing of new functionalities.

In the world of robotic hospitality, the use of 5G and Edge Computing provides real-time control, scalable and efficient catering to cater for timely and unplanned demands, the ability for both beverage and snacking, the telecontrol of mobile trolleys, zero-touch distribution and vending in food handling, and the production of more complex and freshly made products.

Mercedes Fernández, Innovation, Network and IT Manager at Telefónica, says: “Robotics is making the leap from the industrial sector, where it is widely used, to other sectors of our economy, in an unstoppable way. Telefónica plays a key role in this evolution by providing great value with technologies such as 5G and Edge Computing that, combined with others, increase the functionality and capabilities of robots. Being able to call people by name or speak to them in their native language, whatever it may be, seems to us a good way to move forward in this line, which reinforces our vocation to use technology to make our world more human”.

For Victor Martín, CEO of Macco Robotics, “robotics is here to stay, as it provides a high value that substantially improves operability in the sector, as well as guaranteeing food safety. The incorporation of robotics in the hospitality industry allows us to generate new business models, being the first step towards what Macco understands as ‘ultra-personalisation’ at the point of sale, undoubtedly the future of the hospitality industry. Moreover, taking into account that consumer habits are changing in a totally digital world, robotics makes even more sense, as it allows us to offer a 24-hour service, in any circumstance and all via mobile phone”.

Sergio Fuster, CEO of Raventós-Codorníu, explains: “Raventós Codorníu focuses its strategy on sustainability and innovation. With the ‘Raimat Wine On Tap’ system that we integrate in this demonstrator, we present to the world the sustainable revolution in the service of wine by the glass. We see great added value in combining it with a robotic solution of this type which, by adding 5G connectivity and Edge Computing capability, allows us to innovate more dynamically”.

Jordi Zanca, Co-Founder & CTO of Bee the Data, says: “As a leading artificial intelligence company, we develop algorithmic solutions for government and corporate institutions. Together with ImmersiveLab, experts in technological integrations, we provide Telefónica with a facial recognition system that is completely scalable, cutting-edge in reliability, and respectful of privacy, thanks to its ability to operate on edge. Moreover, facial recognition is just one of the functions we can provide Kime with. Our algorithms capture and organise a wide variety of business, operations, security and marketing data and can optimise the processes of any organisation.”