The robotics software platforms are the software packages which simplify the programming of various kinds of robotics devices. It provides various benefits such as unified service execution, programming environment; and a package of common facilities as navigation, computer vision or robotic arm control. The software control cost accounts for majority of the overall cost of the typical robotic project. According to the robotic industry experts about 80% of the project cost is spent on the system integration which includes the software development or the customization. The robotic software platforms are used to standardize and simplify the system integration thereby reducing the overall project costs.
Increased labor safety concerns, need for automation and rising labor & energy costs are major factors driving the robot industry; thus, supporting the robotics software platforms market growth. Growing adoption of robots across various end-user industries such as manufacturing, electrical and electronics, food & beverage, automotive and process controls are seen as primary growth drivers for the robotics software platforms market over the forecast timeline. Growing utilization of robots in varied end-user industries helps in meeting customized demand while simultaneously helping lower the labor costs. Benefits such as ease of offline programming and reduction in equipment downtime has attracted adoption of robotic automation systems thus increasing the profit margins of the companies (users).
The robotics software platforms market can be segmented into industrial and service robots. These software packages are gaining prominence in industrial manufacturing applications as they offer multi-language features and multi-platform operability. According to International Federation of Robotics (IFR), about 70% of the industrial robots were deployed in electrical/electronics, automotive and metal and machinery sectors in 2015. Electronics segment witnessed 18% rise in number of operational units, followed by metal industry and automotive sector growing with about 16% and 10% YOY respectively in 2015.
The European Union is in forefront amongst other regions having strongest growth figures in 2015. According to IFR, European Union constitutes about half of the top 10 nations with most industrial robots deployed per 10,000 employees. Asia Pacific dominated the robots and robotics software platforms industry in 2015. China is aiming to reach top technological nations with its national 10-year plan entitled ‘Made in China 2025’. About 600,000 to 650,000 new industrial robots are expected to be installed throughout China for achieving Beijing’s robot density target of 150 units by 2020. South Korea and Japan constitute the majority market share for the industrial robots and its system integration with double digit sales growth in 2015.
The emergence of common robotic software has increased the demand for service robots and its robotics software platform services. Service robots find their majority applications in military sector where inter-systems interfaces are required. Growing adoption of service robots in medical applications is expected to support the industry growth over the forecast period as the consumers are preferring robots for professional services. Critical healthcare applications use service robots for assistance in pill dispensing, surgeries, and precise needle placement. The ability of these robots to carry out repetitive and tedious nursing functions possess potential growth opportunities for the robotics software platforms industry to standardize the system integration.
The robotics software platform market constitute established OEMs offering software packages to the end-users. Academicians and researchers prefer software provided by the third party vendors for research and experiment on robots for simulation. Some of the prominent vendors providing the robotics software platforms are ABB, Fanuc, Kuka, Cyberbotics, iRobot, Skilligent and Cyberbotics. Companies are developing integrated software depending upon the application types. For instance, Skilligent built a software product which allows robot to autonomously develop needed skills while interacting with humans.
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