June 18, students at six Chinese universities received items they had
purchased from JD.com from robot couriers.
Still a pilot project, the robots were dispatched to just half a dozen
universities, including Renmin University, Tsinghua University and
Zhejiang University. At JD.com delivery stations, items were first
divided among the robots according to size. The smart robots were then
able to plan their routes with the help of an automatic navigation
system, which also assists them in avoiding obstacles en route.
They follow preset routes and send messages to the recipients when they
are 100 meters away from their destinations. The robots can move as
quickly as electric bikes, though they are set to walk at the speed of
pedestrians when on campus. They also slow down in advance of speed
University students will be the first group to benefit from the new
technology. Considering the openness of college students when it comes
to hi-tech products, JD.com will highlight its 1,300 delivery stations
at universities as the promotional campaign for robot couriers kicks