Insolvencies loom large, according to the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) recent report into the global economy. As governments ease their financial support for businesses, we are already seeing redundancies across a number of sectors, including retail, travel, hospitality, entertainment and manufacturing. With so many businesses grinding to a halt over the past few months and now looking to re-ignite interest in a difficult economy, they could be forgiven for trying to re-imagine how they operate and how, in the immediate future, they will survive, let alone grow.
Understandably, interest in robotics is growing, as advances in robotics and robotic process automation (RPA) technologies accelerate. Manufacturing, in particular the motor industry, has traditionally been a leading sector for robotics but now interest is spreading across industries and that includes some unusual applications. The ICE+FRIES bar in Iceland’s capital Reykjavik, for example, with its robot cocktail maker Toni, the robotic restaurant start-up Karakuri, or Spot the robot dog from Boston Dynamics, that patrolled Singapore’s Bishan-Ang Moh Kio Park back in May, reminding people to maintain social distancing. All illustrate the increasing breadth of automated technology but for most organisations, robotics will drive the more mundane.