Innovative robotics, drones, and 3D printing at GITEX will enhance workplace productivity and safety, and our daily lives

Robotics to increase output and workplace safety by 2020: Study

DUBAI — The six-fold growth in mobile robotics by 2020 will dramatically enhance Middle East and global business productivity, workplace safety, and daily lives, according to an exclusive new report by Frost & Sullivan prepared in collaboration with GITEX Technology Week.
Shipments of mobile robotics will grow from 4 million in 2012 to 25.4 million in 2020. The fastest growing sector in this expansion is predicted to be logistics, with unit shipments of logistics-related robotics increasing from 1,400 in 2012 to 95,000 in 2020. The largest absolute growth will be in personal and household robotics, growing from four million in 2012 to 25 million in 2020.
“As robots get inexorably smarter with advances in Artificial Intelligence and know more about the world around them through access to the Internet of Things and Big Data, they will make more informed decisions and be able to adapt to the environments they inhabit. This in turn will lead to richer human-machine collaboration – driving massive gains in productivity, safer workplaces, and better lives,” said Paul Clarke, CTO at the United Kingdom-based Ocado, the world’s largest online-only grocery retailer.
Paul Clarke will headline GITEX’s Retail Wednesday, an all-day conference on how innovations are transforming e-commerce, brand engagement, and the retail supply chain.
He will present on “Harnessing the Power of Technology Tsunamis to Disrupt the Future of Online Grocery Retail and Beyond,” on how Ocado has scaled and sustained e-commerce by harnessing the power of innovative technologies.
To experience the latest innovations in robotics, drones, and 3D printing, register for GITEX Technology Week 2016 at The event will run on Oct. 16-20, 2016 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
Ocado ships over 200,000 weekly orders in the UK thanks to its automated warehouses, the latest of which will have thousands of robots fetching their customers’ groceries. Ocado is currently partnering with several European Union universities to develop the SecondHand humanoid robot, which aims for factory deployment by 2020.
“Humanoid robots with advanced artificial intelligence are set to be a major leap forward in complementing people and enhancing efficiency in the workplace, especially in high-risk and fast-paced environments. As the Middle East’s push for innovation continues, the region is primed to be a center of having robots transform the workplace. Lessons learnt in retail could be extended to other verticals such as healthcare, hospitality, entertainment, and construction,” added Paul Clarke.
With more workplace automation, companies will be able to replace up to 10 workers with one robot, driving down costs by as much as 60 percent, according to Frost & Sullivan.
The European Federation of Robotics, a non-profit organization that aims to promote, strengthen, and protect the robotics industry worldwide, predicts the Middle East will see strong take-up of robotics across businesses, especially in industrial and manufacturing.
“Robots increasingly have the artificial intelligence to carry out tasks based on their own decisions, enhancing efficiency and safety. We are on the brink of a major breakthrough in human-machine technology advancement, and the GCC and UAE have the ambition and early adoption mind-set to be global leaders in using robotics to transform daily lives,” said Simon Andersen, CIO at the European Federation of Robotics.
Robotics, along with drones and 3D printing, are three inter-related technologies that are rapidly decreasing in cost, advancing in sophistication, and driving innovation.
With mid-range 3D printers advancing in quality, there is strong industry take-up – from rapid prototyping in industrial manufacturing, to healthcare with hearing aids and dental braces. Globally, 3D printers and services will grow more than six-fold, from $2.5 billion in 2013 to $16.2 billion in 2018, according to a recent analysis by consultants PwC.
3D printing is making major waves in the retail sector – with industry analysts Gartner predicting at least seven of the top 10 retailers in the world using 3D printing. John Vary, Innovation Manager at UK department store John Lewis, will present at GITEX on how the company’s in-house Room Y innovation hub has prototyped 3D-printed products.
Drones are seeing strong take-up across a wide range of industry verticals – especially in monitoring sites and delivering goods across long distances, and present a global commercial value of $127 billion, according to a recent report by consultants PWC. The three strongest markets are infrastructure, agriculture, and transport, with infrastructure worth $45 billion across monitoring, conducting maintenance, and checking inventory. — SG