- Adidas announced that it has produced a shoe made by robots — not partially, but entirely — in one of its German factories.
- Motion capture technology, 3-D printing went into the creation of a model it calls, Futurecraft M.F.G
- Only 500 pairs were produced initially, with mass shipments expected next year.
While, human hands did not make the shoe, humans did program and service the robotics that made the shoe. One of the big questions here is will robots take jobs away from humans? Jeff Burnstein, president of the Association for Advancing Automation, speaking before the U.S. House of Representatives said recently that robots do not take human jobs. That's a difficult point to argue in this case.
SPEEDFACTORY, an Adidas innovation located in Ansbach, Germany, is designed to be disruptive and to reduce the companies carbon footprint. When it launched last year, the factory was billed as the first of its kind.
In Germany, the government is very supportive of fully automated facilities. The U.S. government is not yet all on the same page when it comes to factories filled with robotics. But the time for discussions and decisions is fast approaching. With Adidas demonstrating how this is done, can other shoe manufacturers be far behind?
Best case scenario is that robotics leads to a redistribution of jobs and not eradication of manufacturing work. However, the industry is facing a worker shortage and as such wages are rising.