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Autonomous Devices Are Creating a New Wave of Business for OEMs

Posted on 15st August, 2019 by Leo Lambert

autonomous drone device

Whether we know it or not, autonomous devices have already transitioned from the world of science fiction into our everyday lives. Using artificial intelligence (AI), self-navigating drones and autonomous vehicles have become commonplace. These autonomous devices are free to move and interact with the physical environment without human direction.

The benefits that autonomous devices could have for our society could be immense. It’s possible that autonomous vehicles will be much safer than manually driven cars because they will eliminate the risk of accidents due to human error. The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 94 percent of US accidents are caused at least in some part through human error.

There are also huge benefits that could be made in the world of autonomous home robotics. A world where the elderly or young children can be cared for at home by machines is not a far-off fantasy. The truth is, we may learn that the benefits of machine-based home care far outpace the same care provided by humans when it comes to quality and cost.

Nvidia AI’s SimOpt model can currently learn skills with limited prior knowledge through reinforcement learning. It’s some of the most advanced technology in the field, but even it is nowhere near the learning capabilities of a human child, yet. In the future, these capabilities and applications will continue to grow, and it’s easy to see how robots with these autonomous capabilities could be used in nearly every industry.

More and more companies are becoming aware of the benefits of autonomous devices. Ford has recently announced its exploratory partnership with Agility Robotics to evaluate the suitability of Agility’s Digit, a bipedal robot. Digit is designed to approximate the look of a human and can lift and carry 40 pounds while navigating complex environments and carrying out tasks like delivering packages. Ford envisions a driverless van arriving at its destination with the Digit in storage. Once at the destination, the Digit unfolds and delivers its package to a prespecified delivery zone. That service is being announced while we are still in the infancy of autonomous devices and their developing technology.

We believe that original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) would be making a great investment by learning about and developing strong understandings of autonomous devices, the Internet of Things (IoT), machine learning, and artificial intelligence. The cost of working with these emerging technologies can be high, and the industry is still developing so it may be years before companies are able to fully integrate this technology into our everyday lives. Beginning your organization’s investment into autonomous devices now will create the potential early opportunities to work with companies on the cutting edge of these technologies.

The need to meet the demand for effective autonomous devices will be high. We recommend contacting the knowledgeable professionals at EPTAC to make sure your staff receives the necessary IPC certifications and training to succeed in this new space.


For over 30 years, EPTAC has been a leading provider of solder training and IPC certification. We provide professionals with the tools and training they need to advance their careers and improve their businesses. With 15 locations across North America, our solutions and instructional staff provide easy access to knowledge that will enhance your business model and help you meet and exceed industry demands. For more information call 800.643.7822 or contact us.

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