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Agility Robotics' Digit humanoid earns prestigious RBR50 Robot of the year accolade

In a year that witnessed the remarkable emergence of humanoid robots on the global stage, one innovation stood apart, capturing the imagination of the industry and the world – Agility Robotics' Digit. This trailblazing humanoid robot has been named the prestigious RBR50 Robot of the Year, marking a significant milestone in the evolution of robotics technology.

The RBR50 Robotics Innovation Awards, presented annually by Robotics Business Review, celebrate the most groundbreaking and transformative robotic solutions across various sectors. In 2023, Digit's exceptional capabilities and real-world applications secured its position as the first-ever recipient of the coveted Robot of the Year award.



Towering at 5 feet, 9 inches (175cm) and weighing 143 pounds (64.8 kg), Digit boasts an impressive payload capacity of 35 pounds (18 kg). However, it is the robot's ability to seamlessly navigate complex environments and perform intricate tasks that truly sets it apart.


At the 2023 ProMAT event, Digit captivated audiences by demonstrating its dexterity in picking up totes from a shelf, walking over to a conveyor, and placing them onto the conveyor – a real-world use case that showcased the robot's potential in logistics and material handling operations.


Agility Robotics, based in Corvallis, Oregon, subsequently announced groundbreaking pilots with two industry giants: Amazon and GXO Logistics, the world's largest pure-play contract logistics provider. These partnerships mark a significant leap forward in the commercial deployment of humanoid robots.


In October 2023, Amazon and Agility Robotics revealed that Digit was being tested at Amazon's robotics research and development facility outside of Seattle. The initial use case involved assisting employees with tote recycling, a highly repetitive process of picking up and moving empty totes once inventory has been completely picked out.


Just two months later, GXO Logistics announced its own pilot program, deploying Digit for logistics tasks at a SPANX facility in Georgia. In this application, Digit is tasked with moving totes filled with products off autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) and onto a conveyor. Agility Robotics stated that Digit will eventually communicate directly with the AMR fleet manager, further enhancing operational efficiency.


Adrian Stoch, Chief Automation Officer at GXO, praised Digit's potential flexibility, a key advantage over other robotic solutions. "The real application here is end-to-end product flow throughout the warehouse," he said. "Until now, solutions have been mostly discrete applications: goods-to-person, sorters, wearable tech. Solving discrete problems in one part of the puzzle."


For companies operating fulfillment centers with a wide product mix or fluctuating demand, the flexibility offered by humanoids like Digit could prove invaluable in addressing the ongoing labor crisis.


Agility Robotics has also taken steps to support the large-scale deployment of its humanoid robots, launching the Agility Arc cloud platform for managing operations and partnering with warehouse management systems (WMS) provider Manhattan Associates.


Jonathan Hurst, co-founder and Chief Robot Officer at Agility Robotics, will be delivering a keynote address at the upcoming Robotics Summit & Expo, taking place on May 1 and 2 in Boston. His talk, titled "Humanoid Robots Get to Work," will explore the technological breakthroughs that have propelled humanoids like Digit into real-world use cases.


Agility Robotics will also be featured in the show's RBR50 Showcase, providing attendees with an opportunity to witness Digit in action at Booth 448. The showcase will also feature cutting-edge technology from industry leaders such as Boston Dynamics, Brightpick, and Locus Robotics.


Moreover, the first-ever RBR50 Gala, a ticketed reception scheduled for 6:00 p.m. EDT after Day 1 of the show, will allow attendees to network with the innovators behind this year's most groundbreaking robotic solutions, including the RBR50 Robot of the Year, Digit.


As the world eagerly awaits the next chapter in the humanoid revolution, Agility Robotics' Digit stands as a shining example of the immense potential that lies ahead. With its remarkable capabilities and real-world applications, Digit has not only earned the prestigious RBR50 Robot of the Year accolade but has also cemented its place as a trailblazer in the realm of robotics, paving the way for a future where humans and humanoid robots collaborate seamlessly to push the boundaries of innovation and productivity.

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