WHEN WILL ROBOTS BECOME AS POPULAR AS SMARTPHONES? A small device to communicate, to get traffic and weather information. What sounded like science fiction 20 years ago, is trivial today. Smartphones are a big part of our life. The triumph of the smartphone began in 2007 after the launch of the first iPhone. Many experts claim that we are about to witness another revolution. Domestic robots are supposed to make our life even easier. But how long does it take until robots become as common as smartphones? GROWING DEMAND FOR ROBOTS Washing machines, dish washers, microwaves and other technical aid are around for many decades but using real robots in your household is not very common until now. At the same time, many people are very interested in domestic robots and the demand is even growing. The International Federation of Robotics (IFR) forecasts that the number of domestic household robots will rise to 31 million until the year 2019. Most of them will be vacuum cleaning robots and robotic mowers. The high demand in domestic robots is a result of many factors one of which is the demographic change that is happening in many parts of the world. Especially Japan and Europe are facing an increasingly aging of their population. When searching for an affordable household help, more and more people are going for robots. They can help you with gardening, work as an assistant for senior care or even as an emotional support against loneliness. ROBOTS NEED TO BE ENHANCED The reason why these kinds of robots are not yet as common as smartphones is not the people’s skepticism but the robots themselves, according to experts like Will Allen from HP Labs. As he explains on the Robotics Trends podcast, current robots are too defective and do not integrate into people’s life. According to Allen it is now up to the production companies to change that. Only if the people really benefit from the work of the robots, their triumph can begin. While robotics becomes an increasingly relevant topic and the demand is growing, more and people decide to work in this field. This could have a positive impact on the technical development of the robots and make them better in a short period of time.