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Softbank Poised to Become Robotics Powerhouse with Boston Dynamics Acquisition

by Ken Hyers | Jun 14, 2017

Google has stepped back from robotics, at least in part, with the sale of Boston Dynamics to Japan’s Softbank Corp. Softbank is best known as a mobile operator in Japan, and owner of mobile carrier Sprint in the USA. But it also has its foot in the robotics space with Softbank Robotics, maker of the Pepper robots. The acquisition will also see Softbank add Schaft, a Japanese maker of bipedal robots also owned by Google, to its holdings.

Boston Dynamics

The purchase of Boston Dynamics and Schaft will significantly enhance Softbank’s expertise in robotics. Boston Dynamics makes brilliant (and somewhat terrifying) robots like its BigDog quadruped and Atlas humanoid robots.

Strategy Analytics’ Emerging Device Strategies (EDS) service forecasts service robot sales will grow at a cumulative average growth rate of 25% through 2022. The largest segment will come from service robots like Softbank’s Pepper robots. Delivery robots, under which some of Boston Dynamic’s robots could fall, will see global sales increase by over 600% during the same period.

Emerging Device Strategies clients can access Strategy Analytics’ Global Service Robot Sales Forecast: 2014 to 2022 here.

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