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Labor Shortages Could Be Solved with Robots

If Elon Musk had a magic ball to predict the future then he'd be betting on the rise of robots to help combat labor shortages.

Elon is moving his futuristic visions away from cars and to robotics.

He told investors on a Tesla earnings call his nascent robot plans had "the potential to be more significant than the vehicle business, over time".

“The foundation of the economy is labor, [and] capital equipment is distilled labor,” Musk said, referring to the robots. According to Musk, if you have “distilled labor” then you “don’t actually have a labor shortage.”

The COVID-19 pandemic helped kick-start a major labor shortage in the U.S. In January, nearly 9 million workers across the U.S. called in sick owing to Omicron, compounding a labor shortage sparked by last year’s “Great Resignation.” Short on staff, retailers like McDonald’s and Starbucks have cut opening hours at thousands of stores across the country.

Musk said the first job for Tesla’s Optimus robots would likely be inside Tesla’s own factories “moving parts around the factory or something like that,” noting that “if we can't find a use for it, then we shouldn’t expect that others would.”

Musk has big plans in the making at all of his respective companies. The world’s richest man said earlier that his company SpaceX plans to send humans to Mars within the next ten years. Musk was interviewed on an episode of the Lex Fridman Podcast, where he spoke at length about his company’s goals for reaching the Red Planet.

Musk said that success hinges on “engineering the vehicle,” noting that “Starship is the most complex and advanced rocket that’s ever been made.” Starship is the latest model of rocket manufactured by SpaceX.

Elon believes robots will be bigger than the electric car industry so let's wait and see!


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