Robots speed up Greek postal services

The Greek postal service has new employees: a fleet of yellow robots sorting mail.

Fifty-five small, four-wheeled, autonomous mobile robots, or AMRs, powered by artificial intelligence, glide through the Hellenic Post sorting center in Athens, speeding up an often difficult process.

They scan the zip code, weigh the package and, at the direction of the sensors, drop it into the appropriate zip bags set around the platform.

The robots are part of the state company’s digital restructuring program, which aims to combat the growing number of parcels from online stores during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Until recently, sorting was done by manual labor with high time requirements, often with errors that resulted in delays in delivery for our customers and increased costs for the company,” Hellenic Post CEO George Constantopoulos told Reuters.

Up to 80% of the sorting of parcels was handed over to robots, and Konstantopoulos said the process was three times faster, ensuring next day delivery.

The robots can handle up to 168,000 parcels weighing up to 15 kg per day and must be charged every four hours for 5 minutes.

“The goal is not to replace human workers with robots, but to make human workers more efficient,” said Constanthopoulos.

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