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Global market for robotics in manufacturing gathers pace

26 January 2017

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Driven by the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), the global market for robotics in manufacturing is steadily gathering pace. Since the industrial cloud is in a nascent stage, manufacturing companies are unclear about its benefits. Nevertheless, digitisation and human–robot collaboration are set to transform manufacturing business models. In pursuit of this vision, major contenders of the industry are investing in intuitive large robots for factory operations. As a result, adoption of industrial robots in factories will witness a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.4 per cent during 2016-2023.

Industrial Automation & Process Control Research Analyst Sharmila Annaswamy says: “Cloud, a major enabler of IoT and data analytics, will disrupt industrial manufacturing as manufacturers turn to software/data-driven services apart from Legacy automation systems. The convergence of information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT) will drive collaborations between robot manufacturers and communication and software providers. By 2023, the global industrial robotics market is expected to reach USD 70.26 billion.”

Industrial Robotics—Decoding the Robotics Impact on Manufacturing is part of Frost & Sullivan’s Industrial Automation & Process Control Growth Partnership Service programme that includes insights on Big Data for manufacturing, digital factories, supply chain evolution, Services 2.0, safety-security for connected enterprises, Industry 4.0, contract manufacturing, and emerging economies of scale.

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Benefits such as better utilisation of factory floor space and 25 per cent reduction in installation cost will draw customers to collaborative robots over their traditional counterparts. However, market participants must strictly consider existing risk assessment methodologies and implement improvised safety regulations to ensure customers the best value. This will encourage deployment of collaborative robots for niche applications such as assembling electrical or automotive parts.

Key challenges that industrial robotics companies will face include industrial cloud security concerns, low awareness, making cloud implementation seamless and cost effective, and boosting the skillset of resources to keep pace with the evolving manufacturing technologies.

Annaswamy adds: “Emphasis is also required on making industrial robots futuristic and economical through new business models, such as collaboration-as-a-service, plug-and-play, and robotics-as-a-service, which focus on quick returns on investment and lasting customer satisfaction. Companies such as GE, Siemens and Bosch are now catering to the specific needs of the industrial cloud market, leveraging their traditional industrial expertise to foray into the data-driven services on their own or through partnerships with IT cloud vendors.”

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