In fact, in terms of industry technology at the current stage, this is a question with a fairly clear answer. I think the subject may still want to ask what kind of robots can enter ordinary households in the next few years or even decades. Focusing on this topic first, I think that a “domestic robot” that can enter ordinary households must meet the following three conditions: 1. The price is moderate, and personally think it is between 1,000 and 5,000 (what technical content do you think you can have if it is less than 1,000? Price? How can someone who is too expensive enter an ordinary family?) 2. It can clearly replace a certain repetitive “housework” (sweeping, tidying, cleaning, laundry, cooking… etc.) 3. It can improve the safety and comfort of family life, Leisure experience.
Based on the above selection criteria and the products currently on the market, I think that being able to enter ordinary household robots is nothing more than the following:
1. Cleaning robots
2. Educational robots for children
3. “Smart home” robots.
The range of cleaning robots is very wide. So, let’s first understand the well-known sweeping robot: quoted from Wikipedia: The first mass-produced automatic sweeper was introduced by Electrolux of Sweden in 1997 and was used in the science of the British [BBC] TV station. The show, introduced in Tomorrow’s World. The British Dyson company launched an automatic cleaning machine named DC06 in 2001, but it was not launched on the market because of the high price. Later, iRobot in the United States launched Roomba in 2002. It was originally expected to produce 10,000 to 15,000 units. After the launch, it was very popular in the market. Only 50,000 units were sold during Christmas. Since then, many companies have introduced different models of automatic cleaning machines. So if you enter the home in 2002, it has been nearly 17 years now, and the market size of sweeping robots is also increasing year by year. The annual sales of sweeping robots in the Chinese market alone are nearly 50 billion US dollars (reference source: China Business Industry Research Institute: Research report on China’s sweeping robot industry in 2018) At the same time, with the entry of more players and the advancement of technology in recent years, the price has fallen to the acceptable range of the public, which has really liberated many human sweeping tasks, especially When you kneel on the ground and lower your head to sweep the dust on the bottom of the furniture, if there is a sweeping robot, it is too cute! But the sweeping robot is not all of the cleaning robots.
For example, glass cleaning robots have become more mature in recent years. Just add water and detergent and put them on the glass. Good guy, 6 has to fly, so there is no need to worry about falling. The most well-known is the German HOBOT Bo Niu automatic glass cleaning robot, the price is only 1000+. Therefore, these robots are in line with the standards for entering ordinary households in terms of price, practicality, or technological maturity.
Children’s educational robots who have been parents may have experienced the experience of telling stories to their children. If you want to tell well, that guy, you can’t just read it, you have to be emotional, and sometimes you have to take some action. For a while, Snow White, another Piglet Peppa, can be male or female, human or animal, mountains, grass, trees, flowers, birds, fish, and insects. All kinds of sounds need to be imitated. I feel that every parent who has experienced it can participate in the sound experience. Up. It is also based on this that for 17 years, a large number of domestic intelligent robots covered in robots and artificial intelligence, but in fact, a story machine in their hearts, have sprung up like mushrooms. The offline sales of certain brands promote intelligent robots like MLMs, and that posture is quite a feeling that humans cannot do it. Closer to home, we all know that a family is most willing to spend money than the children, and children’s education is the top priority. There are indeed many opportunities for AI and intelligent robots to be useful.
In terms of different ages and needs, children’s educational robots can be divided into the following categories: Early education and entertainment early education robots are mostly aimed at pre-school children, so these types of robots are based on providing content as the core, plus voice interaction. Ability, in fact, they are not true “robots” in the strict sense. However, there is no alternative. This type of robot benefits from the low price brought about by the low technical threshold. Instead, it is the “robot” with the largest volume of goods on the C-side.
The content is nothing more than two categories:
(1) Take the story machine as the selling point, supplemented by cute shapes such as the Alpha Egg of HKUST iFLYTEK, Xiaomi Mi Rabbit, etc., the price is less than 1,000, there are many choices.
(2) Using visual recognition, there are many robots that can read picture books on the market that can read picture books. While liberating parents, the cute appearance of robots is also popular with children. For example, the Wukong robot released by Ubisoft last year is cute and cute.
This type of robot is already very popular in European and American countries, but it is still in an emerging period in China. The main players are Excellent Must Choose, Ability Storm, Makeblock, RoboSpace, Xiaomi, etc. To put it bluntly, the escort category is to make up for the lack of accompanying the parents and replace part of the playmate. But, to be honest, there is no robot that can perfectly solve the child care. It can only be said that many products are still working hard in this regard.
But there are also some interesting exploratory products. For example, the cute spherical robot designed by Norwegian dad Kre Halvorsen for his child, MoreHex, which went viral on the Internet a few months ago. This is a robot that can translate, rotate, and roll.
“Smart home” robot This is a word I think, in fact, it is a whole-house smart solution based on smart homes. We can regard the brain of this whole solution as a robot. A smart home is not a new word anymore. It was proposed in the 1990s, and it has developed-ups and downs for many years. Formed a home robot with smart speakers as the mainstream voice terminal. In fact, everyone knows that smart homes have considerable advantages in terms of convenience, comfort, safety, and energy-saving compared to traditional homes. Traditional homes are relatively cumbersome due to physical space, control methods, and other factors. Smart homes allow multiple ways of control, reducing human operations. Traditional home furnishing requires manual adjustment and control.
Smart home furnishing has many humanized functions, and the linkage control with automatic feedback makes family life more comfortable. Traditional home furnishings mostly use physical security. Smart homes can not only implement remote monitoring but also improve the level of home security based on biometric identification. The energy-saving of traditional homes relies on people’s consciousness. Smart homes use sensors to coordinate home appliances, doors and windows, and moisture, and make reasonable arrangements automatically according to the environment. With the increasing proportion of hardcover houses delivered in the real estate market, and the pre-installation market wants to play a trick, smart home is also a direction to try.
And in 2017, the scale of China’s smart home market was 325.47 billion yuan, of which smart home appliances accounted for 86.9%. It is expected that the market will maintain a compound annual growth rate of 21.4% in the next three years, and the market size will reach 581.93 billion yuan by 2020. (Data source: iResearch “China Smart Home Industry Research Report 2018”) Although, optical voice control is not enough to be called a “smart home robot”. To go from intelligence to intelligence, we need to have an AI brain that can process various sensor data.
This brain can comprehensively process acousto-optic sensors, human sensors, spatial information, external weather, user habits, and other factors to provide home users with real smart services. However, we still cannot ignore that this future “smart home robot” is entering thousands of households with a steady pace. The above are some of my views on domestic robots that can now enter ordinary households. In addition, there are also many robots that seem to have a sense of technology and technology.
Why can’t they enter ordinary households at present? In fact, it is nothing more than 3 reasons: expensive, such as the Japanese ASIMO (English abbreviation of Advanced Step Innovative Mobility), which is known as the first humanoid robot. Since its debut in 2000, ASIMO is not only walking speed. It has reached 6 km/h, and the stairs are stable. The latest version of ASIMO’s hand has 13 free movement axes, which can pour you water in addition to sign language performance. It’s quite useful to think about it, I really want to buy it, right? Don’t worry, it is said that ASIMO currently only rents and does not sell, and it costs about 2 million yen (approximately RMB 120,000) to rent a day. Of course, it can also be “long-term maintenance” for 20 million yen (approximately RMB 1.2 million) a year. The local tyrants are at will~ Our ordinary family is very happy to have a robot cleaner. 2. The maturity of technology is not enough to complete the tasks in the unstructured environment (family). Although it can move freely, the stairs can be considered very good at present, but in the unstructured environment of the family, light can walk It won’t work, even if you get to the top of the WeChat rankings.
One is that vision technology is still unable to recognize every object in a 3D unstructured environment, and the other is that the precision of robot hand movements is far from human hands. Especially when many people throw their clothes on the sofa and hang them on the treadmill after they get home… Obviously, they are embarrassing the robot and preventing the robot from entering the millions of households like you. 3. The application scenario is not suitable for the humanoid robots and robot dogs that we all know about Boston Dynamics. Its humanoid robot, Atlas, has been able to spin and jump freely on the grass since 10 years ago with so many lines connected to the ground, and now it can spin and jump in circles. The robot dog Spot can now not only carry heavy loads and open the door, but it can also twist its body to be cute, and the curtain of competition with real pet dogs has also been opened. I have to say that I admire the greatness of its technology, but in the home scene, those tasks that make you want to free your hands cannot be done naturally by robots. Therefore, such soul dancers and door opening messengers have no relationship with ordinary families in the short term. Finally, you might as well imagine further, what kind of robot will be able to enter the home universally in the future? As a member of the robotics industry, I have actually asked many people a question: “If you buy a robot for your home, what functions do you want it to have?” 99% of people will answer without thinking “washing and cooking”.
Even if it seems to be quite a ridiculous answer at the moment, this is indeed one of the core skills that robots must have in order to enter the family in the future. Take cooking as an example. In fact, there are already cooking robots in the industry: Britain invented a “cooking” robot, which sells for 130,000 and can cook 3,000 kinds of dishes.