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DHL deploys new Google Glass for advanced AR picking

AR

DHL employees will be able to use advanced augmented reality (AR) to pick warehouse items as the carrier introduces the new edition of Google Glass.

The Express division will deploy 440 Enterprise Edition 2 devices, a new upgraded version of Google’s flagship wearable.

DHL had worked with Google Glass partner UbiMax to introduce the “vision picking” concept, which allows pickers to receive instructions through Glass, interposed on their line of sight.

The new edition of Glass offers better battery life, charging times of only 17 minutes and increased processing power. It will also be capable of automatically identifying more complex objects.

DHL Express is using the smart glasses at freight hubs in Brussels in Belgium and Los Angeles in the US. This followed an initial pilot at DHL Supply Chain, which began trialling smart glasses in 2015.

The company is also using other wearables such as ring scanner and smart watches in warehouses.

Google sells Glass through 16 partners, including Picavi in Germany and swyMed in the Netherlands.

Markus Voss, COO and CIO of DHL Supply Chain, said: “While these applications are only one part of a company-wide digitalisation strategy at DHL Supply Chain, that includes the use of robots, drones, autonomous vehicles and many other technologies, I am particularly pleased with the positive feedback from the colleagues who work with these wearables on a daily basis.

“The operation is so intuitive, their hands are free to “pick” and the visual support helps to locate the products really fast and sort them into the intended trolley boxes. Our colleagues are perfectly equipped to carry out picking quickly.”

DHL is using simulations and 3D glasses to train employees in Iberia.