Elon Musk announces that Tesla could start selling Optimus robots by the end of next year | VIDEO

Tesla's (TSLA.O. or Optimus) humanoid robot is still in the lab but could be ready for sale as early as the end of next year, Chief Executive Elon Musk said on Tuesday.

Tesla's humanoid robot Optimus captures video

In a conference call with investors, Elon Musk told them on Tuesday that he estimates that Tesla's robot, named Optimus, “will be able to perform duties in the factory” until the end of this year.

Several companies have bet on humanoid robots to deal with a potential labor shortage, but also to perform repetitive tasks with a high level of danger or very boring in industries such as logistics, warehousing, retail and manufacturing.

The Japanese from Honda and Boston Dynamics from Hyundai Motor have been working for several years on the development of humanoid robots. This year, Figure, a startup backed by Microsoft and Nvidia, said it had signed a partnership with German automaker BMW to deploy humanoid robots at the automaker's plant in the United States.

Billionaire Elon Musk is confident that robot sales could become a bigger part of Tesla's business than other segments, including car manufacturing.

“I think Tesla is the best-positioned company of all the humanoid robot manufacturers to be able to get to volume production,” Musk said on Tuesday's phone call, referring to AI capabilities. But he has a history of reneging on bold promises made on Wall Street. In 2019, he told investors that Tesla would operate a network of autonomous “robotaxis” cars by 2020.

Tesla released the first generation of its Optimus robot, dubbed Bumblebee, in September 2022. This year, the company posted a video of the second generation of the bipedal robot folding a T-shirt at the company's headquarters.

For its part, Figure posted a video of its 01 robot in February showing it making coffee, while Boston Dynamics last week unveiled an electric platform for its Atlas humanoid robot, which was seen twisting and turns from lying to standing and walks.