Labor is the backbone of any economy, but as the birth rate declines from year to year, sooner or later there will be a shortage of labor. Tesla Bot is the company's most important product development and will be more significant than even the vehicle business over time, Elon Musk said.
During the 2021 Earnings Call, Tesla CEO Elon Musk tried to explain the importance of the company's new development —Tesla Bot—dubbed Optimus internally. He said that in terms of the priority of products, the humanoid robot is the most important product development that Tesla is doing this year. In addition, Musk explained that Optimus has the potential to become more significant than the vehicle business over time.
"So, in terms of priority of products, I think actually the most important product development we're doing this year is actually the Optimus humanoid robot. This, I think, has the potential to be more significant than the vehicle business over time."
The head of the company also explained the true importance of the new development. According to him, Tesla Bot will become a universal replacement for human labor, since labor is the basis of any economy. The robot will also alleviate the labor shortage due to the significant decline in the birth rate, which will create a problem in the future. In December 2021, at the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) board summit, Musk said:
"[Tesla Bot] has the potential to be a generalized substitute for human labor over time. The foundation of the economy is labor. Capital equipment is essentially distilled labor... The fundamental constraint is labor. There are not enough people. I can't emphasize this enough. There are not enough people. I think one of the biggest risks for civilizations is the low birthrate and the rapidly declining birthrate."
The head of Tesla said that initially, the Tesla bot will likely be used at the company's own facilities. Musk answered "yes" to a question about whether the company itself would use the robot in the factory or elsewhere.
"Yes. The first use of the Tesla Bots, Optimus, the Optimus name seems to be sticking at least internally, Optimus Subprime. Like if we can't find a use for it, then we shouldn't expect that others would. So, the first use of the Optimus robots would be, at Tesla, like moving parts around the factory or something like that."
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