Amazon has been granted patents for employee wristbands, which would track workers and tell them where to go.
The wristbands, which Amazon filed patents for in 2016, would be able to “pinpoint the location of warehouse employees and track their hand movements in real time,” while managers would be able to monitor their performance, according to the Verge.
“The proposed system includes ultrasonic devices placed around the warehouse, the wristbands themselves, and a management module that oversees everything,” they explained. “The wristbands also feature an ultrasonic unit that’s used to track where the worker is in relation to any particular inventory bin. If their hands are moving to the wrong item, the bracelet will buzz.”
Last year, an undercover investigation revealed the poor conditions of Amazon warehouse employees, who were reportedly worked to exhaustion and forced to reach “impossible” goals.
It was also discovered that Amazon delivery drivers were made to work more hours than legally allowed so they would meet “physically impossible” quotas, while in January, a report claimed 10 percent of Amazon’s employees in Ohio are on food stamps.
Last month, Amazon founder and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos became the richest man in history.
Update — Amazon provided the following statement to Breitbart Tech
The speculation about this patent is misguided. Every day at companies around the world, employees use handheld scanners to check inventory and fulfill orders. This idea, if implemented in the future, would improve the process for our fulfillment associates. By moving equipment to associates’ wrists, we could free up their hands from scanners and their eyes from computer screens. We believe Amazon’s fulfillment center jobs are excellent jobs providing a great place to learn skills to start and further develop a career. Like most companies, we have performance expectations for every Amazon employee and we measure actual performance against those expectations, and they are not designed to track employees or limit their abilities to take breaks.