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Automation & Industry: Thousands Vulnerable To Job Cuts

Workers have been losing their jobs to automation for decades – from bankers to factory workers and now, retail and transport employees are set to feel the cut.

In the coming decade, jobs in supermarkets, retail and transport industries are expected to be slashed with the upcoming release of automated technologies.

Tech company, TuSimple, has been testing automated vehicles for UPS over recent months. UPS is also one of the world’s biggest delivery company.

The trails have been running across the US – Arizon, Pheonix and Tucson – and still have a human being the wheel for safety purposes. But it’s only a matter of time before they become redundant.

In supermarkets, perhaps the greatest threat to low skilled employment, check-out operators and attendants are set to be replaced almost entirely by self-service systems in the coming years.

Just this week, a senior executive at Coles told The Sydney Morning Herald the time was ticking on check outs.

‘I have no doubt in the next 10 years, customers will be able to take the product off the shelf, put it in their basket, walk out and have it all paid for,’ Greg Davos told the publication.

And the technology to make this happen already exists – Amazon has been trailing their ‘Amazon Go’ no check-out system, across more than their 20 owned stores in the US.

The technology enables customers to simply walk in the doors, ‘swipe in’ with the mobile app, select their items and walk out the doors.

Amazon hasn’t directly revealed how the technology operates, but sensors throughout the store are able to identify which products you select and charge you through your account.

Artificial Intelligence is also at play – determining what you’re likely to select based on your previous purchase history.

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Those who have used the technology say it works very well.

Over time, if the technology were to be introduced in Australia – which it will – it could potentially wipe out up to 150,000 cashier jobs remaining in Australia.

Of course, they technologies only impact the bottom line, those who are most vulnerable in low skilled roles.

(AAP Image/Joel Carrett)

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