The world’s first robocop has been unveiled in Dubai and will be patrolling streets from tomorrow onward.
The 5 ft 5in tall robot can read facial expressions and will be used by members of the public to report crime and pay traffic fines.
Multi-lingual crime-fighting robots will make up a quarter of the city’s police force by 2030, according to officials.
The robocop is part of the Emirates’ planned robot police force and was unveiled at a three-day long Gulf Information Security and Expo Conference on Sunday.
The conference finishes tomorrow at which point the robocop will be released onto Dubai streets to tackle real crime.
‘The launch of the world’s first operational Robocop is a significant milestone for the Emirate and a step towards realising Dubai’s vision to be a global leader in smart cities technology adoption’, said Brigadier-General Khalid Nasser Al Razzouqi, Director-General of Smart Services for the police in Dubai.
‘With an aim to assist and help people in the malls or on the streets, the Robocop is the latest smart addition to the force and has been designed to help us fight crime, keep the city safe and improve happiness levels’, he said.
The announcement about plans for a robot police force was made at the 11 Best Police Practices Forum held in Dubai in March.
Brigadier Abdullah Bin Sultan, director of the future shaping centre of Dubai Police, told Gulf News: ‘We are looking to have more robots in future to handle policing.
‘By 2030, we are keen to make robots around 25 per cent of the total police force.
Addressing the forum, Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Dubai Police commander-in-chief, said: ‘We hope to achieve our goals to be have a smart police.
‘Police robots have been tested by some police forces in the world and we are planning to have them in future.’
The robot police officer has the ability to scan faces from 20 metres away and bears a touchscreen on its chest which members of the public can use to report crimes.
It also has a microphone which feeds directly to the Dubai Police call centres.
‘We planned for a security system for the future of the city to tackle future crimes,’ he said.
‘By 2025, Dubai will be one of the best five cities in the world on security level.’
He added that 50 per cent of police buildings will be self-powered by 2030 and that the police plan to build a DNA data bank.
‘By 2030, there will be no mysterious or unknown crimes in Dubai and the police will have the biggest DNA data bank in the country,’ he said.
Brigadier Khalid Nasser Al Razouqi, general director of the smart services department at Dubai Police, added: ‘We are looking to make everything smart in Dubai Police.
‘We are aiming to implement many smart police mechanisms, including the smart police station and robots, and adopt artificial intelligence.
‘By 2030, we will have the first smart police station which won’t require human employees.’
A prototype robot was first unveiled at the GITEX annual computer and electronic trade show at the Dubai World Centre in October, 2016.
Earlier prototypes of the robots have been developed with the aim of offering assistance to tourists on the streets and in shopping malls in Dubai.
Dubai Police, IBM’s supercomputer, Watson, and Google have all contributed to the unique design of the robot police officer.