Online expo explores future of 'collaborative robots' in business

Wednesday, Nov 10, 2021 19:07

Workers can now assign their 'co-workers' (cobots) with repetitive tasks, allowing them to spend more time developing innovative strategies and finding solutions to business problems. — Photo Universal Robots

Collaborative robots (cobots) may well be the future of automation in production around the world. That is exactly what leading automation experts discussed recently at the Collaborative APAC – Cobot Expo 2021, an online event organised by Universal Robots on November 9.

Unlike traditional industrial robots, cobots are collaborative and are designed to work alongside human employees, giving businesses the combined benefits of humans and robots. The online event showcased new concepts and approaches to automation involving the perfect human-robot collaboration.

“As companies move towards a new-normal, we are witnessing supply chain challenges and labour shortages caused by an ageing workforce and different career choices. Collaborative automation is setting a trend for people to ascend to more interesting jobs,” said Kim Povlsen, President, Universal Robots.

“We believe that cobots have become a perfect companion for human operators. With more than 10 million tasks currently done by humans, we foresee the growth of cobots to rise exponentially. There are huge opportunities to help businesses create more meaningful jobs and further accelerate the wave of automation,” said Povlsen.

“The disruption to supply chains and sudden material shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has left manufacturers coping with transitions. With all the benefits cobots could offer, such as flexibility and its small footprint, business owners and manufacturers are realising that they can remain competitive in the market. This allows for more activities in collaborative automation and even bringing back businesses that were previously moved offshore,” said James McKew, Regional Director of Asia Pacific, Universal Robots.

With the theme 'Collaborate', Cobot Expo 2021 is a platform where manufacturers can seek answers to tough questions on automation as well as learn and exchange ideas with industry experts.

At the event, cobot experts addressed business challenges posed by an ageing workforce, labour shortages and shifting career aspirations as the topic of 'Refining Automation' and empowering the digital workforce of the future.

Experts also shared business concerns such as how to drive success and avoid pitfalls in automation projects, as well as ways to ensure safety and productivity.

The 'Collaborative APAC – Cobot Expo 2021' conference, exhibition and live chat takes place online from November 9 to 10; recorded sessions are available on-demand until December 31, 2021. Befitting a truly Asian event, the presentations are in English, Japanese, Thai, and Vietnamese on selected topics. — VNS

Comments (0)