What comes to mind when you think of robots? Mechanical arms along assembly lines? Voice-activated, internet-capable technologies? Humanoid creations able to interact with those around them? Modern perceptions vary greatly from the technology’s portrayal in 1960s-era sci-fi — and with good reason. As our capabilities continue to advance, robots are increasingly becoming part of people’s everyday lives. What exactly can we expect to see for the future of robotics? Here, the Houston Mechatronics team offers our take.
The shift to robotics as a service
While companies are interested in the benefits robots offer, they aren’t necessarily looking to own and operate robots of their own. The “robotics as a service” business model — something our team has already begun to put in place — basically allows them to lease the technology for a specific purpose, for a specific amount of time. Cloud connectivity makes it possible for engineers to operate the robots remotely, saving companies time and money and allowing their team members to return focus to their specific work.
Trusting technology to the cloud
The cloud, that abstract, invisible data storage vault, already plays a role in many companies’ practices. That trend will increase as innovation companies develop new ways to use the tool. The ability to “connect” robots that carry out similar tasks, for example, will allow the machines to communicate with one another. When one takes in knowledge which makes its task simpler, it can immediately telegraph to the others, streamlining operations for every robot — no individual reprogramming required.
A continued need for technical professionals
You’ve probably seen the headlines — “Are Robots Taking Our Jobs?” In our opinion, the short answer is, no. While certain lower-level positions will certainly be affected by the push toward automation, the need for individuals capable of controlling, monitoring and building the high-tech machinery will only grow. Yes, we will experience a shift in the job market, but we believe the end result will be a net gain of engineers, roboticists and similar innovators.
Want to delve deeper into how robots will affect your industry? Let’s talk. Call 281.942.9069 or contact us through our website.