One of the keys to unlock IoT’s potential is to nurture it with the right platform, robotics. A little bit about the concept of Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics, despite their differences in various vectors like; processing, mobility, response, learning ability, and design – they are somewhat similar in how they both depend on sensors to understand the environment. Other way to differentiate these technologies is that, most IoT applications handle well-defined tasks, whereas robotics autonomously handle anticipated situations.
Be that as it may, the integration of robots within the IoT can create a synergy that offers great advantages in many fields such as;
- Food service
- Smart homes & buildings
- Renewable Energy
In regards to these combined technologies (IoT & Robotics), we are going to look at some future insights of the most impacted field – manufacturing, and also the field that is currently solving the global food shortage issue with robotics – agriculture.
Picture source: www.engineering.com
The manufacturing industry will be the most impacted one as manufacturers across areas such as; automotive, metal forming, and electronics, have already invested in embedded devices to further improve their manufacturing and monitoring process. Its benefits vary in numerous aspects – installation of predictive maintenance system to increase their analytics functionality, mobility on tracking assets in their factories, and consolidating their control rooms – and they are all made possible by applying IoT solutions. Not only that, but this advanced solution that lets robots to become smarter, faster and more aware (as they are connected to a larger and productive network) – has led many organizations, regardless of their size, to reap its benefits. Business Insider gave an insight on how Tesla’s technologically advanced factory in California, applies robotics to manufacture their cars.
According to a press release by International Federation of Robotics (IFR), the annual sales volume of industrial robots increased by 114 percent over the period of five years (2013-2017), accounting to USD16.20 billion in 2017 alone. Another report by Zion Market Research suggests that global industrial robotics market will reach USD62.19 billion by 2024.
Picture source: https://www.postscapes.com/agriculture-robots/
As global shortages of food and labor have been increasing recently, farmers are starting to turn to reliable robotics with robust IoT connectivity, in order to mitigate the problems. Besides, other pressing issue like unproductive crop yields could be solved and hence, leads to cost and time savings. In terms of its status, there are a few “farmer robots” which are already available, while more advanced ones will hit the market soon. The most common applications of robots in agricultural fields also include aerial data collection, seeding, and field mapping. A video by The Daily Conversation shows how future farms are going to be like with the presence of robots and automation.
Thus, as forecasted by MarketsandMarkets , its market value is expected to rise from previous USD3.42 billion in 2017, to USD12.80 billion in 2022. This 20.71% growth rate would definitely play a vital role in the agriculture’s future transformation.
However, full automation may not be the best option as combining human workforce with it, could produce a much better outcome and increase in efficiency.
In the second series of this article, we will further discuss on the future prospects of other fields that are currently emerging with opportunities through the application of IoT and robotics.