No Games Here: Sony Is the Latest Player in the Surgical Robotics Space

The Tokyo, Japan-based company unveiled a prototype during the 2024 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

Omar Ford

May 15, 2024

2 Min Read
Image Credit: Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images

At a Glance

  • Sony is developing a microsurgery assistance robot capable of automatic surgical instrument exchange.
  • The surgical robotics market is projected to reach $18.4 billion by 2027, with a compound annual growth rate of 16.6%.
  • The company plans to work with university medical departments and medical institutes to further develop the technology.

An unlikely player just entered the surgical robotics market. Sony Group Corporation said it is developing a microsurgery assistance robot capable of automatic surgical instrument exchange and precision control.  

The prototype was unveiled at the Sony booth during the 2024 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA2024), which opens in Yokohama on May 13.

The company noted that in February 2024, an experiment was conducted by Aichi Medical University, where surgeons and other medical practitioners that do not specialize in microsurgical procedures used the prototype and successfully created an anastomosis in animal blood vessels (diameter of approximately 0.6 mm).

Sony claims this is the world's first case of microvascular anastomosis achieved using a surgical assistance robot with an automatic instrument exchange function.

Sony said it plans to work with university medical departments and medical institutes to further develop and verify the effectiveness of robotic surgical assistance technology. 

The surgical robotics market has exploded in recent years in terms of revenue.  A report from Markets and Market shows the surgical robotics market reaching $18.4 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of $16.6%.

The report noted that technological advancements in surgical robots and the advantages of robotic-assisted surgery are the factors contributing to the growth of the market.

So far, 2024 has been a tremendous year of developments for surgical robotics. In March, Intuitive Surgical made significant noise in the space when it won FDA clearance for the da Vinci 5 surgical robot.

And about a month later, Ryan Zimmerman, a BTIG analyst, kept the flames hot in the space when he asked how Stryker would enter the surgical robotics market.

“Stryker is clearly committed to laparoscopic surgery through its technology offerings, but the question still remains if it will choose to enter the robotic surgery field with an acquisition or partnership of a newer emerging system,” Zimmerman wrote in research notes. “We believe it is keeping close tabs on many of the newer systems in the field.”

MD+DI will delve more into surgical robotics during the Robotics & Automation Webinar Series from May 21st to May 23rd. Click here for additional details.

About the Author(s)

Omar Ford

Omar Ford is MD+DI's Editor-in-Chief. You can reach him at [email protected].

 

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