The Sci-Fi fantasy robots of the future have gotten a little closer to becoming a reality with record funding announced for 1X Technologies.
The Oslo-based company closed a Series B round with a notable investment of $100 million.
The Norwegian company, backed by Open-AI and Tiger Global, raised $23.5 million in April 2023. This initial Series A2 round of funding paved the path to the recently announced investment milestone.
With the Series A2 and Series B funding rounds closed, the overall backing of the AI and robotics company is an impressive $125 million in less than 12 months.
Sweden’s EQT Ventures led the round alongside global investors such as Samsung NEXT, Skagerak Capital, and Nistad Group.
Ted Persson, Partner, EQT Ventures, said, “From Leonardo da Vinci to today’s sci-fi, humans have dreamt of humanoid robots for over 500 years. It’s a privilege to witness the enabling technologies form in front of our eyes in real-time.”
The second-generation android known as NEO is the key focus of this new funding.
1X hopes to bring to life the robots seen only in far-flung fantasy settings to undertake household tasks and hopes to offer an “android safe to work among people.”
”We are thrilled that these leading investors are supporting 1X’s mission of safely deploying Androids with Smart Behavior into new markets. Our next milestone will be scaling our data collection strategy for Embodied AI and offering NEO to consumers,” says Bernt Øivind Børnich, CEO of 1X.
Robotics and workers’ rights
Robots operating in the workplace have been a concern of labor activists for some time, prompting the current White House administration to wade into the conversation surrounding AI and the rights of U.S. workers.
The U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Gina Raimondo, said, “President Biden has been clear — AI is the defining technology of our generation, and we have an obligation to harness the power of AI for good while protecting people from its risks.”
American companies are unveiling the practical applications of AI chatbots and their integration into existing household names. Volkswagen recently announced at CES 2024 that the new models released by the company will support generative-AI built as standard.
Persson goes on to say, “The impact of androids joining our human workforce, on our terms, will be transformative (to say the least). We’re convinced 1X, with their NEO androids, will play a crucial role in the pioneering steps towards the first forays of our technological and human future.”
Open-AI, one of the significant investors in 1X, has seen a meteoric surge in interest for ChatGPT across 2023.
With third-party developers looking to adapt the open-source elements of the AI to create more practical uses.
Image credit: 1x Technologies.