BMW Group’s IDEALworks (IW) subsidiary stated goal is for IW to become a leading supplier of autonomous mobile robotics (AMRs) solutions in the logistics sector. BMW’s new initiative validates the AMR market, but also challenges existing AMR players.
Retailers and 3PLs are rapidly adopting a wide range of automation technologies – including robotics – to improve the operational efficacy and efficiency in warehouses and distribution centers. The primary demand driver is e-commerce.
Robotics Business Review reviews Dive Technologies’ recent equity funding round.
As application opportunities increase, the mobile robotics sector continues to expand rapidly, with funding to start-ups continuing, and larger established technology companies, including AGV suppliers, entering the market with solutions developed in-house or acquired. As standardization and commoditization looms, companies emphasize SW, RaaS and specialization as differentiators.
RBR’s provides hot takes on Tesla’s limited beta program for “Feature Complete Full Self-Driving” and the ARM Institute’s emphasis on robotic sewing, textile handling and apparel manufacturing.
Thanks to engineering partnerships with maxon and Solvay, Flybotix goes to market with a highly capable drone-based industrial inspection solution that addresses a real business need. For maxon and Solvay, their Flybotix work deepens their sector and technological expertise, extends their IP portfolio, and enhances their reputation in the commercial drone space. But is there more?
Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMRs) deployments are up substantially, with more to come. As the technology has proven to deliver business value, many new adopters are skipping long term pilot projects and moving directly to partial or full roll-outs.
Inspecting and repairing industrial piping systems is difficult, time consuming and costly. FLX Solutions provides a unique, cost effective solution in the form of a snake-like robot.
The total number of robotics transactions held steady year over year, but the autonomous vehicle and manufacturing automation providers received less investment. Healthcare systems, field robots, and drones got funding in September 2020.
RBR’s offers hot takes on ONRobot’s sanding solution, Brain Corporation’s new CTO, the US DoD seeking sensing solutions, and the Dive Technologies / Virginia Tech partnership.
Market research and consultancy firm Interact Analysis estimates that worldwide revenues for mobile robots will reach US $2.4B in 2020, representing a 45% increase for AMRs and 11% for AGVs over 2019. But that is only the beginning.
The Covid-19 pandemic has broadened the use case for food and grocery delivery services, and enhanced their value proposition. The same can be said for autonomous food and grocery delivery, but significant, business, technological, social and political challenges remain which the accelerative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic do not ameliorate.
Purchasing robots, CNC machines and other industrial equipment for manufacturing operations can be a difficult process, and one fraught with uncertainty, especially for small-to-medium manufacturers. The US’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) has some suggestions and best practices designed to support decision making and reduce the risk.
Trade conflicts, geopolitical tensions, and now the COVID-19 crisis, is putting global supply chain at risk, and as a result companies are expected to reverse the multi-decade trend of offshoring. As robotics and automation becomes more capable, cheaper, and easier to implement, the technology is likely to accelerate reshoring initiatives.
Despite the ongoing pandemic, robotics investment and acquisition activity did not slow down in August 2020, with funding flowing to autonomous vehicles, industrial automation, and drones.
The inefficiencies plaguing the manufacturing industry stem from technological limitations of automation. When those technological barriers are overcome, it is possible to unlock productivity gains with an optimal combination of humans and machines.
Robotics fundings, mergers, and acquisitions in July 2020 stayed at comparable levels with transactions from a year ago and June.
When inflexible automation collides with manufacturing trends requiring more flexibility, productivity suffers. Why? Manufacturing as currently practiced — with poor human-machine collaboration — is not sufficiently responsive to the long-term trends of shorter product life cycles and increasing product diversity.
Even before the advent of the Covid-19, autonomous mobile robot companies, notably those producing robots for use in e-commerce fulfillment centers, factories and warehousing, were experiencing a boom in investment. The pandemic is only accelerating investments in the AMR market.
In June 2020, investment and acquisition activity picked up a bit for autonomous vehicles, mobile robots, healthcare systems, and industrial automation.
Interact Analysis’ Rueben Scriven reviews the grocery warehouse automation market in the context of Ocado, and discusses the likely impact of COVID-19 on the growth potential of the company and the sector overall.
The RBR50 awards honor technology, business, and market innovations, as well as the robotics and automation organizations worldwide that were responsible for them.
Softbank’s most promising robotics investments are not those targeting the experimental technologies, nor the massive funding rounds for self-driving vehicles, but rather the mid-range investments in mobile robots for industrial and commercial applications.
Despite strong economic headwinds from global shutdowns in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, some funding and merger activity continued in April 2020, particularly in healthcare, transportation, and manufacturing.
The RBR50 Robotics Innovation Awards, widely recognized as a leading indicator of robotics innovation leadership, have been broadened in 2020 to celebrate robotics innovation in a wider range of forms.