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Revenge of the Robots: Are Robots Now Dominating CES?
At CES2018, you can check out the Future Robot “family” of robots in Tech East:
Tech East, LVCC, South Halls 2
LVCC, South Hall 2 - 25330
“The global service robotics market was valued at around $9 billion in 2016 and is expected to reach approximately $24 billion in 2022, growing at a CAGR of slightly above 17.8 percent between 2017 and 2022.”
SK and his robots
The founder and CEO of Future Robot is Dr. Se-kyeong Song, better known to friends, colleagues, employees, and just about everyone else in Korean robotics as SK.
SK is the former CTO in the Strategy Office of Samsung’s Electronics Mechatronics Center, and a Ph.D. in Robotics from KAIST (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology) that was tabbed by Reuters as Asia’s #1 university for innovation.
See Future Robot profiles:
From Airports to Living Rooms: Can Mobile Robots Succeed with U.S. Consumers?
Korean Robots Go for Gold at 2018 Olympics
Winter Games to feature a dozen service robots in first-ever appearance
Robots being social
SK has a large following in Korea that packs conference halls whenever he shows up for one of his well-appreciated, two-hour sessions on the future of robotics. Some are even open courses, attended by companies, research institutions, citizens and civil servants.
In addition to building robots, SK and his company are on a mission for his robots to help make a better world. Such was the tenor of his recent lecture at Gwangju Metropolitan City’s "Special Lecture on the Fourth Industrial Revolution", with an emphasis on intelligent robotics.
"We should focus on human assistance and support for intelligent robots,” he told the audience, “combined with artificial intelligence and robots and resolve the social problems facing humanity and become a global leading nation [Korea]."
Both SK’s machines and his company’s mission seem ideally suited to themed tracks like CES2018’s AI and Robotics Impact on Tomorrow, in particular.
Just the sound of the title is easy on the ear for SK. He and his Future Robot team are among the early handful of survivors from the bad old days.
CES2018 is the beginning of the good old days.
See the SK interview:
Dr. Song’s All-Korean, Olympic, Robot Team
Korean service robots to get biggest introduction ever: showcasing their “services” to 3.1 billion global viewers
Unlike most service robot companies that have just a single robot, Future Robot has a family of them. There’s something in the company’s product lineup for home/personal use; something for malls, airports and department stores; and even a tabletop machine for retail sales.
In a first-ever for the Olympic Committee, a dozen of Future Robot’s FURo-Ds will be meeting and greeting (in seven languages) some hundred thousand attendees at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, Korea. By the closing ceremonies, the robots will have logged over 400 hours in services helping the international crowd of visitors.
From laughable, fall-down toys to kings and queens of live events, hooray for robots
At CES2013, you could count the number of robots in residence on one hand, or maybe a hand and a half. The biggest robot hit was the autonomous monorail that toted thousands to the venues. Any mention of a robot future at many CES panel sessions that year drew eye rolls, sneers, or a dismissive hand wave.
The previous year was worse: the Robot Marketplace needed an appearance by Justin Bieber to draw a crowd. At CES2012, with eighty-thousand warm intellects floating around, it’s hard to imagine robots not being popular. Ah, but those were the dark, grim days when robots were just about totally overlooked.
Today? My oh my how the worm has turned. Robots rule! These days even refrigerators, stoves and dishwashers at CES will be trying their best to be robots. Robot is not a sneer word any longer. It’s cool to be a bot.
Granted, robots have come a long way. Boston Dynamics has its Atlas doing backflips and going viral on YouTube. All the miniature electronics gear in our Smartphones is tumbling out into robots, the Cloud is rolling in over them, and now AI is figuring out how best to get in the robot game.
So how many robots will grace the electronic fairgrounds at CES2018? Plenty, and none will need the services of The Bieb to create interest.
For example, the producers of CES2018, the Consumer Technology Association, are putting up technology tracks that show lots of robot love. Check out this sample of sessions on robotics at CES2018:
AI and Robotics Impact on Tomorrow
• Companies are investing in AI research and development with an eye on profits
• Robots: What are the challenges as they integrate into society?
• How will AI and robotics impact life in the year 2020?
The Future of AI
The Future of Robots at Work and Home
Rise of Machines – Future of AI
For robots, it doesn’t get better than that. If you are a robot developer, your time is here and now. Let the good times roll!
Future Robot’s bright future…at long last
One such robot company that has been building its machines since way back in the primordial robot days of 2009 is Future Robot, a low-key but up and coming Korean builder of robots with a fistful of high-end patents together with a mounting global presence for its service robots.
Chances are if you travel to CES2018 in Las Vegas by way of LAX or San Jose’s Mineta, or Edmonton International, Tokyo’s Narita or Amsterdam’s Schiphol airports, you’ll have encountered a chatty trio of Future Robot’s FURo-D meeter/greeter, multi-lingual, robot guide teams doling out help for humans.