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World Demand for Service Robots Still Rising

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Ann R. Thryft
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Bots for pros, not consumers
Ann R. Thryft   4/21/2014 12:27:58 PM
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Although their numbers are still much smaller than industrial bots, demand for service robots keeps going up. Contrary to the impression we all might get from lots of consumer advertising for Roomba and other household bots, the big numbers here are actually in professional machines like those used in the military and agriculture.





Cabe Atwell
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Re: Bots for pros, not consumers
Cabe Atwell   4/22/2014 5:38:26 PM
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Defense spending on robotics.. yet another sad use of the higest tech. Always used to hurt people.. or supoprt those who dish out the pain. Then the medical spending is dwarfed in comparison. The problem with society today. (Ago old complaint, I know)

C

NadineJ
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Re: Bots for pros, not consumers
NadineJ   4/23/2014 1:43:44 AM
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I think there's hope.  Last last year, the gov't in Japan announced it would financially support the development of lost cost robots for nursing homes.  Monitoring robots can track patients who wander off.  Is a self-cleaning toilet considered a robot?

Here on DN, I remember seeing humanoid robots that can lift patients.

Solar panels on every roof, robots in every nursing home...Japan seems to have an eye on the future.

naperlou
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robots, robots everywhere
naperlou   4/21/2014 12:52:08 PM
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Ann, thanks for sharing this information.  It is interesting to see these trends.  Many years ago I ran into a robot in the entertainment and liesure category.  There is a sushi restraunt in London called Yo Sushi.  This was the first sushi restraunt I ran into that had a conveyor belt for the sushi.  You sat at the bar and grabbed the sushi off the conveyor when something caught your fancy.  The plates were color coded and that is how you were billed at the end.  In addition, there was a drinks robot that wound through the place following a cable in the floor.  It would stop behind you and ask if you wanted something to drink.  All in all, it was fun.

On the other hand, I just saw this article in Bloomberg (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-06/humans-replacing-robots-herald-toyota-s-vision-of-future.html).  I wonder what the impact on these trends this will have.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: robots, robots everywhere
Ann R. Thryft   4/21/2014 1:15:06 PM
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Lou, you're welcome. DN's Elizabeth Montalbano has written several times about restaurant and bar serving robots, including at least one that serves sushi. The sushi boat concept (conveyor belts) has been around a long time, since at least the 80s, and I wouldn't call a conveyor belt robotic. But your drinks serving robot sure sounds like one of this class, even if it's not autonomous.

mrdon
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Re: robots, robots everywhere
mrdon   4/22/2014 9:17:03 AM
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naperlou

I agree. The robotics industry is quite exciting as new applications for the use of intelligent machines are on the rise. Robotics trends have definitely changed since the days of the Unimate Robot. Below is additonal information on the Unimate Robot along with a nice video on the history of robots.

 

http://www.robothalloffame.org/inductees/03inductees/unimate.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mbHy7TZ06_s

Debera Harward
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Re: robots, robots everywhere
Debera Harward   4/23/2014 2:40:54 AM
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@Naperlou , I really liked the idea of drink robot and can actually feel how much excited you would have been at that time . No doubt this is something new to me and i am hearing for the first time thanks a lot for sharing with us .

mrdon
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Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
mrdon   4/21/2014 6:29:30 PM
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Ann,

Very good report on the robotics trend and growth potential data. Its amazing to see how the industry has grown and the number of market venues produced over the years. Agricultural robotics is one of interest because of where I work in Moulton, AL and the number of farms located there. I believe I read that the Agricultural robotics is nearly a billion dollar industry with an increase demand in drones. The aerial views they provide related to water irrigation, rotation of crops and insect infestation is valuable data for the farmer. Ideas of starting an agricultural robotics company keeping circling the grey matter because of the growth potential exitsting in this new tech market.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Ann R. Thryft   4/21/2014 7:38:21 PM
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mrdon, thanks for that info on agricultural robots. Supposedly, they're mostly automatic milking stations, but those actually can be enormous and very expensive systems. So I'm not surprised at that billion-dollar figure. That's especially interesting about drone usage in agriculture--it makes total sense, but we tend to be focused on military and security industries for UAVs.

mrdon
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
mrdon   4/22/2014 8:52:26 AM
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Ann

In addition to automatic milking stations, argricultural bots are finding applications in greenhouses. The bots are used to move plants around in the greenhouse as well as perform task such as watering them. Harvest Automation seems to be the leader in these types of argicultural bots as shown in the link below. Included in the link is an interesting video about Harvest Automation robots.

 

http://robohub.org/harvey-a-working-robot-for-container-crops/

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Ann R. Thryft   4/22/2014 5:46:03 PM
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mrdon, those greenhouse robots are also new to me--thanks for that link, I can use it.

mrdon
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
mrdon   4/22/2014 9:49:17 PM
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Ann,

I'm glad to help out. Your articles have inspired, motivated, and educated me to pursue my research, writing, and project prototyping endeavors. Thanks!

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Ann R. Thryft   4/23/2014 12:34:31 PM
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mrdon, thanks for your very kind words. I'm glad we've helped.

Debera Harward
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Debera Harward   4/23/2014 2:38:57 AM
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Anne, thanks a lot for such an informative post , the figures you mentioned are really very usefull no doubt the demand for service robots is increasing world wide especially in the field of farming these robots are being used for mowing of grass , inspection of crops to find diseases and parasites with the help of infra red sensors, spraying the medicine on the affected area , then there are robots that are used to check the status of the yield and gets the riped fruits and vegetables off . Inshort we can say that service robots are becomming very popular and there demand is also high .

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Ann R. Thryft   4/23/2014 12:37:21 PM
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You're welcome, Deberah. Thanks for a reminder that not all agricultural robots are elaborate milking machines.

Cabe Atwell
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Re: Agricultural Robotics has growth potential
Cabe Atwell   4/25/2014 5:02:47 PM
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As a flipside to my last comment, service robots are becoming quite the norm in hospitals and other care facilities in Japan. Seems patients are becoming more accustomed to their presence and are not as frightening as once thought.

AnandY
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Re : World Demand for Service Robots Still Rising
AnandY   4/28/2014 9:46:58 AM
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Ann thank you for this outstanding article, it has really changed my way of thinking about robots. I think any body can guess why the demand for defense service robots is continuing to rise. Most governments always put much into security issues neglecting some other fields like medicine ant the rest. The fact that the demand for service robots has risen is also affected by the rise of automation of agricultural sector, many farmers have realized that robots help save time and also cut short expenses on human labor hence high returns. 

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Re : World Demand for Service Robots Still Rising
Ann R. Thryft   4/28/2014 11:20:40 AM
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AnandY, thanks and glad to help. And I agree with you about the disproportionate allocation of R&D dollars. The numbers are tiny compared to military and security bots, but still rising.

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