Watch Robot Dog Enforces Social Distancing in Singapore Park  

Watch Robot Dog Enforces Social Distancing in Singapore Park   


A four-legged robot built by US-based Boston Dynamics patrolled Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park to remind people of safe distancing measures starting from Friday (May 8), The Straits Times reported.

Called Spot, the robot assisted with safe distancing efforts at parks, gardens and nature reserves managed by National Parks Board (NParks) and at parks managed by town councils.

The pilot trial is jointly conducted by NParks, and the Smart Nation and Digital Government Group (SNDGG).

Boston Dynamics robot in Singapore. Image: Reuters
Boston Dynamics robot in Singapore. Image: Reuters


The Spot robot will broadcast a recorded message reminding park visitors to observe safe distancing measures.

"Let's keep Singapore healthy," the yellow and black robodog named Spot said in English as it roamed around. "For your own safety and for those around you, please stand at least one metre apart. Thank you," it added, in a softly-spoken female voice.

Despite the niceties, breaches of Singapore's strict lockdown rules can result in hefty fines and even jail.

Under rules to enforce the lockdown in place until June 1, residents can only leave their homes for essential trips like grocery shopping and must wear a mask at all times in public. Exercise outdoors is permissible but must be done alone.

According to Business Insider, another robot, known as O-R3 in the shape of a small car, was deployed at Bedok Reservoir Park by national water agency PUB as a kind of safe distancing ambassador.  It warned visitors "not to loiter" and that "gatherings are not allowed".

Boston Dynamics robot in Singapore. Image: Reuters
Boston Dynamics robot in Singapore. Image: Reuters


As well as broadcasting messages reminding visitors of social distancing measures, Spot is fitted with cameras and analytics tools to estimate the number of people in the park.

Authorities said the cameras would not be able to track individuals or record personal data.

Spot has also recently been trialed for use at a temporary hospital delivering medicines to patients.


Indah Gilang Pusparani

Indah is a researcher at Badan Perencanaan Pembangunan Penelitian dan Pengembangan Daerah Kota Cirebon (Regional Development Planning and Research Agency of Cirebon Municipality). She covers More international relations, tourism, and startups in Southeast Asia region and beyond. Indah graduated from MSc Development Administration and Planning from University College London, United Kingdom in 2015. She finished bachelor degree from International Relations from University of Indonesia in 2014, with two exchange programs in Political Science at National University of Singapore and New Media in Journalism at Ball State University, USA. She was awarded Diplomacy Award at Harvard World Model United Nations and named as Indonesian Gifted Researcher by Australian National University. She is Researcher at Regional Planning Board in Cirebon, West Java. She previously worked as Editor in Bening Communication, the Commonwealth Parliament Association UK, and diplomacy consulting firm Best Delegate LLC in USA. Less
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