Cyber Monday Has Gone to The Robots

By now we should have finished the leftovers of Thanksgiving, fought crowds of every kind at every establishment, and managed to spend our time with our family members or our income on their gifts.  Although this would seem like a full holiday weekend let us not forget the final blow, Cyber Monday. Today is expected to be the single largest day of online sales of the whole year and rightfully so.  This year’s sale projection is expected to reach $3 billion before the end of today according to the Associated Press.  Which leaves the question “who is handling all of these orders?” Not Elfs but rather robots are responsible for overcoming many logistical challenges organizations like Amazon face.  In facing the challenges of a day like today Amazon’s robots will be handling many of the distribution aspect of finding, gathering, and organizing products within warehouse across the world. The most interesting aspect of this operation is that Cyber Monday is becoming more of a regular day of online shopping despite the hype many retailers placed upon this specific date.  As online retailers only continue to provide consumers with competitively priced products year round, the need for work forces like what amazon is utilizing is gradually becoming larger.    Davey Alba noted this in his article “On Cyber Monday, Friendly Robots Are Helping Smaller Stores Chase Amazon” published by Wired.com today.  As the cost of managing a robotic work force becomes more manageable and beneficial, many other online distributors can begin to compete with Amazon directly.  Examples provided show that firms like Locus Robotics provide third party solutions to retailers like Zara, Gilt, and Bonobos.   One this is for certain, as Cyber Monday begins to lose much of its luster, the role of robotics within retail distribution begins to show greater potential.