Worldwide Spending on Robotics Will Reach $188 Billion in 2020


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Worldwide spending on robotics and related services will more than double by 2020, growing from $91.5 billion in 2016 to more than $188 billion in 2020, according to the newly updated Worldwide Commercial Robotics Spending Guide from International Data Corporation (IDC). In addition to spending data on robotic systems, system hardware, software, robotics-related services, and after-market robotics hardware, the robotics spending guide now includes data on commercial purchase of drones and after-market drone hardware. 

"The market for robotics continues to experience tremendous growth," said John Santagate, research manager, Supply Chain at IDC Manufacturing Insights. "This growth is really fueled by a combination of technology improvements, expanded use cases, and acceptance in the market. Innovators in the field of robotics are delivering robots that can be used to perform a broader range of tasks, which is helping to drive the adoption of robotics into a wider base of industries." 

More than half of all robotics spending comes from the manufacturing with Discrete Manufacturing delivering 31% and Process Manufacturing providing 28% of the worldwide total in 2016. This situation will remain relatively unchanged throughout the forecast with the two industries investing nearly $110 million in robotics in 2020. The leading robotics use case in Discrete Manufacturing is assembly, welding and painting, while mixing is the leading use case in Process Manufacturing. 

After manufacturing, the three industries with the largest robotics spending in 2016 were Resource Industries ($8.0 billion), Consumer ($6.5 billion), and Healthcare ($4.5 billion). These industries will maintain their relative positions throughout the forecast, although Consumer spending will significantly narrow the gap with Resource Industries by 2020. Cross Industry robotics spending, which represents use cases common to all industries, such as warehouse pick and pack, will also rank among the top segments throughout the five-year forecast. The industries that will experience the fastest growth over the 2015-2020 forecast period are Consumer, Healthcare, and Retail.

"Robotics is now an integral part of industry transformation, which has brought about significant improvement in operational agility and efficiency in both developed and emerging markets," said Dr. Jing Bing Zhang, research director, Robotics at IDC Manufacturing Insights. "We are seeing faster growth of robotics adoption in general industry roles, and some of the leading suppliers we tracked have enjoyed compound annual growth rates of more than double that for automotive industry for the past few years." 

From a technology perspective, purchases of robotics systems, which includes consumer, industrial, and service robots, and after-market robotic hardware will total more than $40 billion in 2016. Services-related spending, which encompasses applications management, education & training, hardware deployment, systems integration, and consulting, will come to more than $20 billion in 2016. The fastest growing segments of robotics spending are drones and after-market drone hardware, which will grow to nearly $20 billion in 2020. 

On a geographic basis, the Asia/Pacific region, including Japan, will account for more than two thirds of total robotics spending throughout the forecast. Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) is the second largest region with expenditures of $14.7 billion in 2016, followed by the Americas with a 2016 spending total of $12.9 billion. Robotics spending will more than double in Asia/Pacific over the 2015-2020 forecast period, making it the fastest growing region followed by the Americas, which will edge ahead of EMEA in total spending by 2018.

The Worldwide Commercial Robotics Spending Guide quantifies the robotics opportunity from a region, industry, use case, and technology perspective. Spending data is available for more than 52 use cases across 13 key industries in eight regions. Data is also available for a wide range of robotics hardware, software, and services categories. Unlike any other research in the industry, the detailed segmentation and timely, global data is designed to help suppliers targeting the market to identify market opportunities and execute an effective strategy.

About IDC Spending Guides

IDC's Spending Guides provide a granular view of key technology markets from a regional, vertical industry, use case, buyer, and technology perspective. The spending guides are delivered via pivot table format or custom query tool, allowing the user to easily extract meaningful information about each market by viewing data trends and relationships.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. With more than 1,100 analysts worldwide, IDC offers global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. IDC's analysis and insight helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based technology decisions and to achieve their key business objectives. Founded in 1964, IDC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, data, and marketing services company.

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