Robot-throws-out-first-pitch
A robotic arm throws out the first pitch to a KT mascot at a Korea Baseball Organization opening game in Suwon Stadium on March 29. Courtesy of KT Wiz

5G technology enables ceremonial pitch by robot

Tossing out the first pitch is a big honor in the Korea Baseball Organization league. That honor has typically belonged to humans, but last week a robot claimed the accolade.

Ahead of the opening match of this season between the KT Wiz and the Kia Tigers, a robotic arm threw out the ceremonial pitch in Suwon Stadium, about 30 kilometers south of Seoul.

The robot, which was built by Korea’s leading telecom company KT, works like a catapult to throw the ball to home plate. It hurled the ball to a KT Wiz mascot that swung and missed.

The robot was initially wrapped in a big box in the mound. It was unveiled just ahead of the pitch so as to bring a wow effect.

KT said that the Seoul-based telecom giant took advantage of the fifth-generation (5G) technologies.

We transformed an industrial robot to a robotic arm for the first pitch. We tried to bring the 5G technologies to baseball so that fans can more enjoy the game,” a KT official said.

We transformed an industrial robot to a robotic arm for the first pitch. We tried to bring the 5G technologies to baseball so that fans can more enjoy the game,” a KT official said.

KT and other Korean wireless telephony service providers like SK Telecom and LG Uplus are scheduled to start the world’s first 5G services on April 5. Toward that end, they are cooperating with handset manufacturers like Samsung Electronics.

Last week, KT and Samsung Electronics tested the commercial 5G network in Seoul to achieve the 1Gbps speed, which is fast enough to download an entire high-definition film in seconds.

The two companies have focused on providing end users with real-world outdoor mobile experiences, achieving overall 1Gbps speed on 5G smartphone connected to 5G commercial network,” the two firms said in a joint statement.

This has been one of the key accomplishments for the two companies – proving that 5G commercial network is ready to deliver stable gigabit speed for end-users.”