Robotics & Automation Trends Driving the Manufacturing Industry in 2018

The manufacturing sector has been greatly impacted by the Industrial Revolution and the world has moved towards automation and, finally, digital transformation is here to change the world with areas full of unexplored opportunities, IoT (Internet of things), and AI (Artificial Intelligence). The impact has been a customized production model instead of mass production. Digitization is happening on a rapid scale as customers’ demands and expectations are on a rise, leading to the integration of AI in electronic devices that see day-to-day use, making the entire operation automatic. The advent of artificial intelligence has meant a machine’s ability to learn and adapt to human behavior, which in turn led to robotics. Robotics is not a new concept; traditionally, robots were confined to performing repetitive tasks on the assembly line. Presently, robots are much more capable of identifying human behavior and are highly collaborative with different devices.

Robotic automation system at a factory.

Robotics and automation have been a part of the industrial realm for years, but there is an increased level of dexterity that is resulting in more productivity and potentiality in the industrial sector. According to a study by the Boston Consulting Group, global spending on robotics could reach to $67 billion by 2025, out of which $24.4 billion will be utilized in the industrial sector. This automation will help the industrial sector reach productivity levels beyond human potential, which is made possible by the industrial robots designed to perform even in hazardous environments.

This doesn’t exactly pose the threat to humans and their employment prospects that has been speculated. According to Forrester Research, there will be close to 15 million jobs that will be created with the advent of new technology and the newest digital revolution. Why is this? Because no matter how much digitization and self-driven machine learning happens, ultimately someone should be there to program, monitor, and manage the tech cyborgs.

Popular and potential areas for robotics and automation

IoT integration and analytics: IoT has the immense power to revolutionize the world once the information and data is synchronized with the analytics. Everything from layout to functioning of the organization will change drastically, resulting in advanced efficiency.

Warehouses and inventory: Every single process of automation and robotics will benefit the warehousing and inventory industry a lot. From single item management to tracking and security, things will be more automatic and prompt when handled a robotic way.

Health care: The world of medicine and healthcare will benefit a lot, as robotics and automation is of great use and helpful for performing very intricate and tough surgeries, thus benefiting mankind.

Drones: According to research carried out at a robotics conference, almost 60% people are more interested in drones than the other types of robots. This gives leverage for their use in the manufacturing and health sectors.

Complement to human effort: With the kind of expectations on the rise for cost and productivity, and the bulk amount of automation required, it will be near impossible to meet goals without the use of robots. Hence, robots are a complement for humans but surely not their replacement.

The robotics industry is still in its infancy, but holds a 100% potential in almost every field wherever automation is highly recognized. Technology today, backed by a strong cloud network and IoT helps in giving the right information and, when integrated with robotics and virtual reality, the innovation and development is bound to reach increased levels of productivity.

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