Panorama of the robot industry: industrial class is busy extending upwards Service class accelerates ecological construction

Recently, the China Electronics Society organized relevant expert-level researchers to jointly prepare the “China Robot Industry Development Report (2018)” officially released. The report aims to study the development level and characteristic trends of the domestic robot industry in 2018, and deeply analyzes various regions of China. The level of development of the robot industry. In order to facilitate reading by Yiou readers, this article will analyze the main points of the report for your reference.

In 2018, China’s robot market is expected to reach 8.74 billion US dollars. From 2013, its average growth rate has reached 29.7% in the past five years. It can be seen that China’s robot market has entered a stage of rapid growth.

Industrial robots: the strongest development, user companies extend upstream

In terms of categories, the market development of industrial robots is the most obvious. According to IFR statistics, in 2017, the sales volume of industrial robots in China was 138,000 units. It is estimated that the sales volume will exceed 150,000 units in 2018, and the market size will reach 6.23 billion US dollars. By 2020, the domestic market will further expand to 9.35 billion US dollars. The development trend of industrial robots is so strong, thanks to the intelligent transformation and upgrading of China’s manufacturing. The most frequently used robots in industrial production – handling loading and unloading robots account for 65% of the total sales of the robotics market in China. Followed by assembly robots, accounting for 15%, welding robots accounted for 6%.

In recent years, domestic industrial robots have gradually gained market recognition. In the core components such as reducer, servo control and servo motor, the old-fashioned enterprises and a number of innovative companies are working together, and the trend of localization is gradually emerging. In the specific application field, after the automobile and electronics, the hardware bathroom and furniture appliances have become the main application fields of domestic industrial robots. At the same time, with the importance attached by the state to environmental protection and people’s livelihood issues in recent years, the application range of robots in industries such as plastics, rubber and other high-pollution industries, as well as environmental protection, food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries related to people’s livelihood will continue to expand.

From the perspective of manufacturers, the industrial robot field as a whole has a tendency of “users are extending upstream”. Due to the growth of procurement scale and enterprise transformation, some enterprises in the downstream key areas of the robot industry chain have begun to accelerate the process of mergers and acquisitions and research and development, and further extend to the upstream, that is, downstream users gradually turn to self-supplied robots.

Service robots: huge demand potential, accelerated ecosystem construction

Service robots are an area of ​​great interest in the robotics market. As the population aging trend accelerates and the demand for medical care and education continues to flourish, China’s service robot market has huge market potential and development space. In 2018, China’s service robot market is expected to reach US$1.84 billion, an increase of approximately 43.9% year-on-year, higher than the growth rate of the global service robot market. Among them, the size of the robot market for the three scenarios of family, medical and public services is 890 million US dollars, 510 million US dollars, 440 million US dollars.

The reason for the rapid growth of the service robot market is inseparable from the expansion of emerging application scenarios and the adoption of application models. China has extensive research and layout in the application fields of medical, education, cooking and other robots, and the acceptance of new products by end users is gradually increasing. At the same time, under the impetus of artificial intelligence technology, multi-modal human-computer interaction, biomimetic materials and structure, modular self-reconfiguration and other technologies are becoming more and more popular in the development of robots. There are also some startup companies that can provide robots with low-level technologies such as positioning navigation, voice interaction, and face recognition, which can improve the differentiation and meet the user’s needs for robots in specific scenarios.

From the perspective of service robot manufacturers themselves, there is a trend of “accelerating ecosystem construction”. Because the development process of robots is very complicated and involves many interdisciplinary knowledge such as mechanics, control, electronics, etc., a group of emerging startups use the robot platform as a starting point to build an ecosystem integrating hardware, software, network and community. This allows users to develop robot applications on the platform without having to have complex hardware knowledge.

Special robot: multi-point breakthrough, drone ecological start layout

In recent years, with the continuous expansion of special robot application scenarios, in response to earthquakes, floods and extreme weather, as well as mine disasters, fires, security and other public safety events, the demand for special robots is obvious, making the market also enter a An important period for being ready to go. In 2018, China’s special robot market is expected to reach 670 million US dollars, an increase of 23.2%, higher than the global average. And with the further improvement of the awareness of safety production in Chinese enterprises, the use rate of special robots in hazardous environments will be greatly improved. It is estimated that by 2020, the domestic market size of special robots will reach 1.07 billion US dollars.

Thanks to the guidance of the policy, China has formed a series of products such as special drones, underwater robots, search and rescue/explosive robots in the field of special robots. It is worth mentioning that in the field of drones, various enterprises have begun the layout of the ecosystem, and the vertical industries such as drone application agriculture, logistics, surveying and mapping have been rapidly spread.

Looking at the development of the robot industry in six major regions

According to the administrative region and the actual development of robots, the country can be divided into six regions: Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei, Yangtze River Delta, Pearl River Delta, Northeast, Central and Western. The report shows that the development of the robot industry in the Yangtze River Delta region is the strongest; the robot industry in the Pearl River Delta and Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region has gradually developed and expanded; although the Northeast region has certain first-mover advantages, the overall performance of the industry in recent years is relatively limited; the central region and the western region The development of the regional robot industry is relatively weak, but it has shown considerable potential for development.

As the largest industrial R&D and production cluster in the domestic industry, the Yangtze River Delta region takes industrial robots as its main business development direction. With its economies of scale and trapped hardware and software production capacity, it has a large share in the domestic robot market. At the same time, the Yangtze River Delta region has a considerable market for industrial robots such as automobile manufacturing, electronics manufacturing, food packaging, etc., which provides a very rich soil for the development of the robot industry. At present, the Yangtze River Delta region is focusing on the independent research and development of core components and the corresponding market layout, which will provide impetus to the entire robot market.

The robot industry in the Pearl River Delta region has a strong development foundation, represented by Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Foshan and Dongguan. The Pearl River Delta manufacturing industry is more concentrated, and labor-intensive industries such as electronics manufacturing, food packaging, and ceramic production are gathering together, making it the most concentrated area for labor input in China. This provides a sufficient application market for “machine substitution”. However, in terms of talent development, the Pearl River Delta has a certain gap compared with the Yangtze River Delta and Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei regions.

The biggest advantage of the development of the robot industry in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region lies in its prominent location advantages and a good manufacturing base. The robotics industry in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei has formed a basic pattern of rapid development, dislocation competition and complementary advantages. Among them, Beijing focuses on intelligent robots, while Tianjin is around the production of robots and supporting components, while Hebei has a certain influence in the field of system integration and special robots.


At present, the development of China’s robot industry is generally good, and the regional industry development misplaced competition and late-developing advantages coexist. With the application scene gradually expanding to emerging areas, diversified applications have also spawned some of the market “Little Giant” companies. At the same time, it should be noted that there are still many problems to be solved in China’s robot industry. For example, the price competition around system integration is more common, the development of independent brands faces the challenge of cost performance and capital supply, and the application of industrial robots to light and light applications.

Post time: Sep-04-2018
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