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Naver plans to build the world’s first robot-friendly building

Naver plans to build the world’s first robot-friendly building

Posted April. 14, 2022 08:04,   

Updated April. 14, 2022 08:04


“Team NAVER will keep on creating synergy in the workplace while striving for convergence of new technologies,” said Naver’s CEO Choi Soo-yeon.

At the virtual NAVER Meetup event on Wednesday, Choi unveiled the company’s future plan and revealed the reasons for choosing its second main office building called ‘1784,’ located in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province, as the place for the event. From search engine to e-commerce, contents, B2B, and robotics, Naver’s business expands in multiple direction, and the 1784 building is a crystallization of Naver’s future. The 1784 building, which stands next to the company’s first main headquarters, houses only some of its employees and has never been revealed to the public.

The most enticing feature of the building, where various technologies the company has been developing thus far, including Naver Labs, Naver Cloud, and Naver Works, was a robot named Rookie doing tasks on behalf of human employees. Designed to adapt to the floor without thresholds, Rookie was delivering mails and parcels to employees’ desks using a specialized elevator called robot port. Rookie is a brainless robot automatically working on orders from the outside based on the 5G network and Naver Cloud environment that are installed inside the building.

When Rookie stands before Ambidex, a robot looking similar to human torso, Ambidex sterilizes Rookie. Alto-1, a drawing robot, is drawing on a smart tablet. An official from Naver emphasized that the 1784 building is the world’s first robot-friendly building and explained the meaning of the building’s name. “The name was originally the title of a project that started at the address 1784, the year the Industrial Revolution started,” the official said. “We thought the number represents a grand-scale tech convergence that Naver is working on.”

Do-Hyong Kim dodo@donga.com