Travelers might want to be on their best behavior in China’s Shenzhen airport, because the robot guards aren’t here to mess around.
That airport is the first to deploy a new security robot, the AnBot, to help beef up its security. AnBot is almost five feet tall and is equipped with cameras, flashing lights, and an “electric riot fork” that can be used to discourage criminal activity.
AnBot will be used to patrol specific areas of Shenzhen airport. While its main function is to keep travelers in line, the robot will also be able to communicate with people and display information about flights. The hope is to reduce the workload of the airport’s human security guards by using several of these robots.
The problem is, in real life, they actually look nearly identical to the ridiculous Daleks from Doctor Who. Here’s a video from a demonstration of AnBot at a Chinese expo:
AnBot is similar in both form and function to a robot made by Knightscope in California. That robot got into a bit of trouble when it ran over a toddler while it was roving around the Stanford Shopping Center in July.
Knightscope, luckily, wasn’t equipped with a tool designed to electrify anyone committing a crime in front of it. While AnBot probably isn’t the killer robot the Pentagon is worried about coming from China, it’s easy to imagine that “electric riot fork” being used on the wrong person by mistake.