The current focus of the industry tends to be on giving robots vision. Specifically, the rise of machine vision technology. This, combined with the advancement of the Internet of Things (IoT), gives machines the ability to process images and understand what they are “seeing.”

As this technology continues to proliferate, the next step is giving robots the ability to apply these things to learn on their own. For example, a robot can currently be programmed to pick up and place items, but in the future, it will combine machine vision with machine learning to figure out its own programming through trial and error.

Another major trend that will continue into the future, are collaborative robots. This reflects the focus of the industry towards creating robots that are simpler, easier to program, and able to integrate into current processes.

To make these robots safe, there’s a large market for safety sensors that ensure humans can work alongside the robots without any significant risks. Machine vision will contribute to this as well, offering robots the ability to “see” when someone is in their workspace.