While this is, in all likelihood, nothing more than a PR stunt, we can’t help but wonder if this is our first ever case of robot on robot crime. The “incident” took place in Las Vegas during this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, and the Promobot was reportedly decommissioned.
Before we go any further, if your first question is “what on Earth is a Promobot?” – the answer is an autonomous robot designed for business purposes, able to recognize faces, answer questions and more.
It can even integrate with third-party devices and systems and move while avoiding obstacles, although what it can’t do, apparently, is cross the street safely.
The unit that was “killed” by the Tesla Model S is actually the new Promobot V.4, which was making its way to its CES booth when it suddenly left its trajectory and proceeded into the parking lot.
That’s when the robot was struck by the Tesla EV, itself allegedly operating in autonomous mode, but with a passenger inside. After the crash, the robot ended up on its side, suffering irreparable damage (not really) to its body, head, arm mechanisms and movement platform, according to Promobot themselves, who went on to alert Elon Musk as to what had just happened:
Look @elonmusk at a Tesla Model S hitting and killing a guiltless robot in Vegas. Your car was under a full self-driving mode. @bheater, @jjvincent, @ingridlunden, @andyjayhawk Check this out!https://t.co/0q605Fdknb
— promobot (@promobot) January 7, 2019
This all looks very tongue-in-cheek, so on that note, all we can say is that if this doesn’t bring on the robot uprising, we don’t know what will.