The International Federation of Robotics on February 19 announced that it expects almost 2 million new units of industrial robots to be installed in factories around the world by 2022. The report also outlines the trends and market developments that the IFR expects will define the robotics industry in the near future.
“Programming by demonstration,” according to the IFR, for instance humans guiding robot arms through required tasks by way of training the robot to replicate the movements, will make it easier to program and install industrial robots. This sort of human-robot collaboration will continue to gain popularity, according to the report, with voice, gesture, and intent recognition allowing for humans and robots to work together simultaneously as partners.
Industry 4.0 will also require improvements in robot-to-robot communication in industrial settings. The OPC Robotics Companion Specification, an open platform and generic interface for industrial robots, will also help connect these robots to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). Cloud technology is expected to enable new business models,such as robot leasing, or robots-as-a-service, that will require no committed capital, provide fixed costs and automatic updates, and eliminate the need for skilled robot operators.