Described as "war dogs" that "descend from the sky."
A video has gone viral of a large drone dropping off a gun-wielding robot dog, a terrifying vision of what the future of warfare and policing could soon look like.
The footage shows a sizable octocopter drone dropping off its armed payload on a rooftop in an urban area. The robodog then springs to life and stretches its legs.
The robot appears to be carrying a modified, semiautomatic assault rifle, which has been the service rifle for the People's Liberation Army and paramilitary agencies in China since 1995.
The clip was shared by an account called Kestrel Defense Blood-Wing on Chinese social media. According to a rough Google translation of the account's description of the video, "war dogs" that "descend from the sky" can be "directly inserted into the weak links behind the enemy to carry out surprise attacks," be delivered "to the top of enemy buildings," or provide fire suppression.
Blood-Wing, a Chinese defense contractor, demonstrates drone-deploying an armed robodog.
The Future is Now. pic.twitter.com/tRKnKa8xvp
— Lia Wong (@LiaWongOSINT) October 4, 2022
Needless to say, it's a controversial use of the technology. Just this week, Boston Dynamics, maker of the popular Spot Mini robodog, which bears a striking resemblance to the robot in the video, announced a pledge to never weaponize any of its robots.
That hasn't stopped others from arming quadruped robots. Several US defense contractors have shown off prototypes of four-legged robots carrying large weapons.
And last year, a Russian tinkerer strapped a submachine gun to a Chinese robodog, firing off rounds after rounds in an alarming video.
It's unclear if we'll ever see robot dogs being air dropped from the sky via drones — but, as the video demonstrates, the technology definitely already exists.
More on robot dogs: New York is Deploying Robot Dogs to Fight Fires Now