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R E S E A R C H   R E P O R T
Outlook for Next-Gen, New-Gen Industrial Co-Worker Robotics
The cultural trends, companies and technologies contributing to the co-worker robot revolution
By Casey Nobile

SPECIAL REPORT: 41-page Outlook for Next-Gen,New-Gen Industrial Coworker Robotics.
Read about innovative companies building solutions for the SMB market:
Their technology, their research, where they’re going and why.

Also available on Amazon for Kindle.
And at our store as an individual pdf.

Next-Gen, New-Gen, co-worker—call it what you may, a robotics revolution is rolling into manufacturing, warehousing, materials handling and supply chains all over America… and around the world.

Take it from Kiplinger: “The U.S. is on the cusp of an explosion in robotics that will have a significant impact on business and the economy over the next decade.”

This in-depth report covers the following key topics:


Impact of the New Robotics for 2013
Next-gen Workers
The Importance of the SMB Universe
Rise of the Iconoclasts: Rethink Robotics & Universal Robots
Kawada’s HIRO & the EU’s “Cobots”
Responses from the Majors: KUKA, ABB & Yaskawa’s Motoman Division
An Interesting Outlier: Redwood Robotics
The Future of Collaborative Robotics: Barriers and Breakthroughs

The Next Wave in robotics

Technological change comes in waves, sometimes arriving unexpectedly, sometimes not, and most times the technology changes things forever or at least until the next wave begins to crest. That’s good, that’s progress.

Another wave has begun to rise above traditional, industrial robotics. In light of increased competition, this year will see the emergence of a new class of mechanical worker, the likes of which have never been seen before, and which will revolutionize commerce and industry, lose people their jobs, and create new jobs in the process.

Continuing into 2013, the SMB market will become a new battle ground for robotics companies as more low-cost “co-bots” enter the market.

While relatively young robotics companies such as U.S.-based Rethink Robotics and Universal Robots (Denmark) have targeted SMBs from the outset, the handful of well-established industrial robotics corporations, which have been integral in growing robotic automation in heavy-duty industries, are expected to push their own products geared towards smaller businesses.

We bring to light those various dual-armed, light-weight smart machines, which have been incubating in research labs and, in some cases, are already performing light assembly work in factories.

Combined with concurrent developments in vision, manipulation, computation and additive manufacturing, the next generation of robots is poised to be smarter, faster, stronger and less expensive than current models. Plus, they’ll be working in direct contact with humans.

Among those companies covered are: KUKA, ABB, Yaskawa Motoman Robotics, FESTO, Rethink Robotics, Universal Robots, Kawada Industries, Redwood Robotics, Meka Robotics, Willow Garage, Industrial Perception, Delcam, Robert Bosch and QPoint Robotics Solutions…along with an array of research institutes and international initiatives.

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About the author

Casey Nobile is the lead editor for Robotics Business Review’s RBR50 news, editorial and business segment. She is also contributing writer and editor for the publication’s News & Technology columns with special emphasis on breaking news coverage for science, technology and financial transactions. Casey is also editor and contributor for other in-house publications: Robotics Trends; RoboBusiness and RoboBusiness exhibit services.

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