ome eight months ago, before COVID-19 emerged and became a pandemic, the use of robots in companies was considered a threat to jobs held by humans. However, at present it does not seem such a crazy scenario but, on the contrary, we need, more than ever, to use technology.
Why do we need robots?
It is not news that the disease known as coronavirus is highly contagious and is transmitted through close contact between people. Therefore, the best solution is social isolation, maintaining the greatest possible distance and taking extreme hygiene measures. So the use of technologies that work with AI (Artificial Intelligence) is essential to flatten the contagion curve. The robots are being designed and used to fulfill multiple functions, such as: taking the temperature, transporting medicines and food to the sick, retail service, among others. But a no less important point is the development of technologies that work in companies performing tasks on production lines. Although industries such as the automotive industry have been using machines to improve their productivity for years, it is also true that many others have resisted this type of innovation. However, today they see artificial intelligence as an opportunity to keep their company standing.
What is driving the increase in robots in companies?
There are three major trends that are currently driving a notable increase in the use of robots both on production lines and in logistics processes. These are:
The context of the health emergency that we have been experiencing for several months in the face of the coronavirus, means that there is a considerable reduction in personnel. In the first place, because most governments have dictated mandatory social isolation. This meant that all the people who did not provide essential services (especially the health sector) were forced to stay at home, unable to even go to work. So many companies went bankrupt because they could not sustain production. Second, the reduction in employment occurred and continues to occur, unfortunately, due to the number of deaths due to COVID-19. Therefore, the risk of contagion and the number of deaths are factors that have driven the increase in the use of robots.
Demand on the rise
Ecommerce has been gaining ground for some years, but in a pandemic situation, it has become the most used method to buy any type of product. As a consequence, it is predicted that by the year 2025, the number of packages transported will be more than double than at this time, exceeding 200 billion articles annually. In addition to the demand for logistics and transportation, what is also increasing is the speed with which customers are waiting for their orders. Ensuring this efficiency during the pandemic may be possible thanks to the use of robots.
The growing technological progress
The technological progress that the industry is leading makes robots more economical and speed up production, logistics and transport times. In turn, the cost of sensors that allow robots to adapt quickly to changes in their environment is also decreasing. As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, robots can not only be used in production processes, but they can also be very useful to complement human work in vital areas such as health.