Hyundai recently announced the completion of their acquisition of Boston Dynamics. With these two industry leading players joining forces, the future of Smart Mobility comes highly anticipated.
Following its announcement of valuing Boston Dynamics at US$1.1 billion, the South Korean leading automotive company, Hyundai, confirmed its completion of acquisition of the robotics company. The official announcement was released late June 2021.
Previously under SoftBank, a Japanese investment company, Boston Dynamics is now owned by Hyundai, which holds a controlling portion of interest in the renowned robotics company. Prior to SoftBank, Boston Dynamics was owned by Google for more than three years. The company focuses on the creation of mobile robots with the goal to elevate lifestyle through streamlining daily functions and interactions.
Boston Dynamics influenced the commercial world back in 2019, with the release of its robotic dog, ‘Spot’, designed to mimic the movements and mannerisms of a real dog. With the success of Spot, Boston Dynamics announces its anticipated release of ‘Stretch’, an advanced design of its warehouse robot, ‘Handle’.
This partnership is expected to bring benefits to both parties. After announcing their ‘Strategy 2025’ in 2019, Hyundai is working towards fostering Smart Mobility devices and services as their core business pillars. In early 2021, Hyundai announced the design of their ‘walking car’ robot, ‘TIGER’, aiming to bring this concept to life at the earliest opportunity. According to Hyundai’s Ernestine Fu, with this new deal in place, Boston Dynamics’ technological expertise and knowledge will play a substantial role in making such concepts come to life. The purchase of Boston Dynamics can be seen as another stepping stone in Hyundai’s path towards becoming a Smart Mobility Solution Provider.
Boston Dynamics has been adamant on sustaining an exclusive research sector, holding back on further releases of commercialised technology such as the quadruped robot-dog, ‘Spot’, and dynamic humanoid robot, ‘Atlas’. However, under the vision of Hyundai, the company may adopt a more progressive approach.
To celebrate this acquisition, Hyundai released a short video of the influential K-pop boy band and brand ambassador, BTS, dancing with Spot. Many fans enjoyed this fusion of two worlds, and many are hopeful of successful mutual growth and the movement towards Smart Mobility and the future of transportation.
Banner image credit: @BostonDynamicsOfficial