DHL deploys AR smart glasses to accelerate warehouse operations globally

DHL have rolled-out augmented reality (AR) smart glasses as part of their digitalisation strategy, which aims to accelerate their warehouse fulfilment processes globally.

In 2015, the AR-enabled smart glasses saw a successful pilot at DHL ahead of the wider introduction. Following test runs in the USA, Europe and the UK, DHL rolled-out the technology to more markets. It is now available in Brussels, Belgium, and at Los Angeles Airport, USA. Further deployments are planned at the US airports of New York, Cincinnati and Chicago.

The device aims to enable ‘hands-free’ picking in a warehouse environment. Its visual capabilities allow warehouse staff to locate the products fast and sort them into the intended trolley boxes. Augmented reality in the warehouse is driving a more accurate, productive and efficient picking process. The DHL Express will also use these wearables in their hubs.

Improvements to the latest smart glasses include longer battery life, a processor that is twice as fast, and shorter charging times. According to the manufacturer, the devices are also much more robust. Improvements take the industrial use in intralogistics into account.

The smart glasses and other wearables such as ring scanners and smartwatches are already being used in many of DHL’s warehouses. DHL say that this technology only from a single part of the digitalisation strategy, leaving more room for innovation of the last mile services and solutions.

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