The emergence of RaaS reflects the broader move to services-based models in technology
Anyone who's familiar with cloud computing might know about software-as-a-service, infrastructure-as-a-service, and other "as-a-service" delivery models. But they might be not be aware of the latest iteration: robotics-as-a-service (RaaS).
RaaS also leverages the cloud, and makes it possible for organizations to integrate robots and embedded devices into the web and cloud computing environments. This capability will become increasingly important as robots become more common in work environments such as warehouses, distribution centers, and stores.
With RaaS, data captured by robots -- such as customer preferences or inventory status -- can be stored on a cloud-based system and retrieved as needed by human workers. This type of service can provide even more value if a company is operating a fleet of hundreds of robots, each performing a variety of tasks.
"The general trend among many technology providers is a long-term migration away from selling products to selling services beyond the usual incremental revenue from support, maintenance and upgrades charges," said Dan Kara, practice director for robotics at research firm ABI Research. "Services are recurrent revenue, and are looked on favorably by both technology providers and the investment community. Like the technology sector at large, suppliers of robotics technologies have adopted robotics-as-a-service business models and this trend is accelerating."
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