First of all, let’s break the robotic market up into two distinct categories – service and manufacturing. The reason for that is quite simple. The cost of goods is greater for manufacturing, the cost savings from automation is significant there. Services are another area that robots can impact the economy quickly. I would like today to discuss the positive side of this impact and then focus on what needs to be done not to get run over in this new economy. There are jobs and tasks on an assembly line that you can automate for efficiency. There are things that require humans to intervene and evaluate, but many things that do not. The biggest area however that won’t replace humans is that of services.
First off, services are where you can have a robotic unit (Jibo) placed at home or the home of an elderly parent or parents. Jibo will allow you to interact with your parent remotely, remaining them to take pills, checking in on them and allowing them to connect to you with only their voice (you can also do that with Alexa devices, connected to your phone).In this scenario, you can reduce the cost of helping your parents stay independent. You can also reduce the miles between where you are and where your parents are by simply having a remote device like Jibo. Overall this is the highest growth area in the short run, which actually will help the economy more than it hurts the economy today.
Helping in the sense that you will be purchasing a device, that device requires human interaction to create and manage. That is a plus employment solution. We are not talking about situations where home health care is required (My wife is a hospice Social Worker I am well aware of the difference between dependence and independence). Using these devices will allow parents to remain where they are comfortable for longer (not just parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents and so on). This represents a non-impact on healthcare professionals that don’t engage with parents, aunts, and uncles in these situations anyway. That gives us a net increase overall in jobs (people that make, program and manage the robots). That is a great starting point!