Dubai is building RoboCops to replace humans, and the first is here

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Image: Dubai Police Smart Services.

By 2030 the city wants 25% of its police to be robots.

Tomorrow Dubai’s first robotic police officer will start patrolling the city’s streets, and at first glance it puts human officers to shame.The Dubai Police Robot can speak in six languages, including Arabic and English, its chest-mounted touch screen can help people pay fines and access information, and its eyes can detect emotion, recognise hand signals and even run facial recognition.

Starting tomorrow the robot will patrol tourist attractions and Dubai’s malls, its wheels and cameras give it the ability to independently navigate and map the insides of buildings.

“The launch of the world’s first operational Robocop is a significant milestone for the emirate and a step towards realising Dubai’s vision to be a global leader in smart cities technology adoption,” Brigadier-General Khalid Nasser Al Razzouqi, Director-General of Smart Services at Dubai Police told Dubai’s Khaleej Times.So should Dubai’s human police force be concerned?

Quite possibly.

RoboCop is here

Dubai has said that it wants to recruit (build) enough robots to make up 25% of its police force by 2030.

So after a trial period with this first bot, the city says it will start placing orders for more.

There’s still a long way to go before these Police Robots can fully match the abilities of a human police officer, whether that’s chasing down a criminal or disarming someone with a knife.

And Dubai has been clear, their Police Robots will never be armed.

But this first generation, which was built with help from Google and IBM Watson, certainly shows promise.

Police beware.

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