As 2023 is almost coming to an end, it's a good time to take a look back. What has shaped industrial robotics this year and how will AI continue to develop in the field of robotics in 2024? In our “AI outlook” interview, we asked our CSO Christian Fenk for his personal view on what to expect in 2024.
robominds: "Christian, looking back, what was the most important trend in industrial robotics in 2023?"
Christian: "In addition to the fact that companies involved in artificial intelligence have developed incredibly quickly and strongly, it has become clear that the topic of AI robotics has finally arrived in the wider industry. We now not only receive inquiries from the innovation departments of the"big players", but also from companies of all sizes and from almost every sector. From the smallest company with 2 employees to the big players in the automotive sector, AI is finally finding its way into industry across the board. AI robotics companies such as robominds are showing more and more impressive fields of application of what is possible with AI robotics. However, these examples are being created less and less in the company's own labs and more and more cases are being shown by customers and users in practice. In general, I have the impression that a lot has happened in 2023 in terms of acceptance. What makes me personally very happy is that the established industrial robot manufacturers have also taken a big step towards this disruptive technology. In 2023, at least we at robominds had a lot of dialogue and the first approaches to major collaborations with the aim of linking the topic of AI and its benefits even more closely with robotics!”
robominds: “AI was probably one of the most controversial social issues this year. What opportunities and challenges do you see for AI in 2024 and for robotics in particular?”
Christian: “Artificial intelligence was an incredible buzzword, especially last year! It feels like everything and everyone has to do with AI, talks about AI and is an AI expert. It went so far that there was even a special AI edition of a well-known shower gel brand. For 2024, I expect and hope that the topic of AI will become more firmly established and that we will finally return to the actual benefits of this technology. Artificial intelligence is the next step in robotics and offers enormous advantages, but at the end of the day, it's still the result that counts first and foremost! Is the part in the box or not? Is the pallet stacked or not? Has my robot done its job or not? I am convinced that we will see a lot of new approaches in the field of AI robotics in 2024 and the coming years. The start-up scene in particular is extremely dynamic in the field of AI. However, I am also convinced that the companies that can offer real added value with their AI technology will prevail on the market in the long term!”
robominds: “In which industries will the use of AI robotics be particularly relevant?
Christian: “There is a very simple formula for recognizing whether AI robotics is exciting in your company or industry. Anywhere where the same thing is often done but never the same is the ideal area of application for AI robotics. This is because, unlike conventional robotics, the process steps in AI robotics are not rigid. This means that the system can react independently to changes such as different sizes, different colors or similar and simply continue working. As a result, the system is not only much more robust in terms of environmental influences or variations in the components, but the investment in a robotic system is also much more future-proof.”
robominds: Do you have any recommendations for companies in the industry that want to start with AI in 2024?“
Christian: “Also here, I can only recommend a tried-and-tested formula that has already helped with other new disruptive technologies. Take the time to familiarize yourself with the new technology and, if possible, appoint an expert in your company to train and educate you. Almost all companies on the market offer training for this. Once you have familiarized yourself with AI in robotics and have the first fields of application in mind, it's time to get started. Start with a simple application. Give yourself and your team time not only to familiarize yourself with the new technology, but also to gain initial experience in your own company. This will not only enable you to better validate future use cases, but also build up incredible know-how internally.”