It’s Not Just You, Your Coworker Is A Robot: Why Companies Are Embracing the Humanoid Hype – The Average Joe
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    It’s Not Just You, Your Coworker Is A Robot: Why Companies Are Embracing the Humanoid Hype

    Rhea Lobo

    March 13, 2024

    Attention Earthlings: The humanoids are here and coming to a workplace near you. Once confined to the realms of science fiction, these robots are cropping up worldwide — from warehouses to workplaces, their human-like form makes it easy for them to handle all kinds of tasks.

    What’s behind this robo-revolution? Advances in manufacturing and cheaper hardware costs are driving down the price of building or buying robots capable of carrying out repetitive tasks across industries. The average selling price ranges from $10K to $15K, making them an attractive investment for businesses — especially since many current robots can’t outright replace humans (yet).

    • In 2023, 21% of warehouses used robots in some capacity, up from 15% in 2018, according to Interact Analysis.
    • Goldman Sachs predicts the global robot market could touch $38B by 2035, while Global X estimates humanoids might impact 35% of the manufacturing workforce worldwide.

    Companies crave the human(oid) touch

    Last year, big players like Apptronik, Boston Dynamics, and Tesla ($TSLA) stepped into the arena, revealing their human-like robots and joining a crowded field of companies looking to sell hardware helping hands. Agility Robotics’ new $250K robot, Digit, is already assisting in Amazon’s ($AMZN) warehouses, adding to its fleet of over 750K robots. The Global X Robotics and Artificial Intelligence ETF ($BOTZ), which tracks robotics companies, has seen a boost of ~38% in the past year thanks to this humanoid hype.

    • The demand is fueling massive funding for robotic startups — with humanoid robotics startups securing ~$1.6B over the last five years.
    • One notable example is Figure, which raised $675M from investors like Jeff Bezos and Nvidia ($NVDA) just last month despite not yet having a commercial product.

    Forward-looking: Recent advancements in AI and computer vision could enable humanoids to tackle more complex tasks. Robotics companies aim to achieve this by integrating artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance humanoid capabilities. In March, OpenAI announced a collaboration with Figure to bring ChatGPT-style AI to humanoid robots, potentially revolutionizing how we use robots in our daily lives and industries. So, it might not be long before you ask Alexa to do more than just check the weather — it could be vacuuming your home, too. Oh wait, it’s already happening.

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