Nationwide partners with Labrador to pilot assistive robots

Nationwide is partnering with early-stage robotics company Labrador Systems to explore the capabilities of the Labrador Retriever, a new type of personal robot designed to empower individuals to live more independently as well as provide support to caregivers.

Labrador’s Retriever robot is designed to help people maintain their independence in the home by serving as an extra pair of hands to help move large loads as well as keep smaller items within reach. Featuring “advanced 3D vision, obstacle sensors and navigation capabilities,” the Retriever is designed to support a variety of users’ needs. The robot can operate either on-demand or on a pre-set schedule by automatically delivering items at a specific time and location.

As part of the partnership, Nationwide’s innovation team is sponsoring Labrador’s cross-country tour to study the use of the Retriever in a variety of use-cases, including senior living communities, post-acute rehab programs and individual homes.

“As a technology-focused mutual with a mission to protect our customers over the course of a 40-to-50-year relationship, Nationwide is actively thinking about how our members’ needs change and how we can help them stay safe. We think there is great potential in the assistive robots that Labrador has developed and we are excited to learn how technology like this can serve our members who want to live independently, as well as help their family caregivers who assist them.” – Nationwide chief innovation and digital officer Chetan Kandhari.

“Our 2021 pilots demonstrated the deep need for practical help with activities in the home, as the Retriever quickly became a regular part of our users’ daily lives. With Nationwide’s support, we are able to expand our pilot programs to work with multiple organizations across the country and allow more people to experience the Retriever firsthand and provide feedback on their individual needs.” – Labrador Systems CEO Mike Dooley.