This is the fourth in a six-part series we’re publishing on the future of robotics. Every day this week, we’re publishing a detailed outlook on a category within the robotics market including details on our thesis, outlook and market size for each category.
Due to advancements in computer vision, robot functionalities and, most importantly, lower component costs, adoption of robots is accelerating in both commercial and domestic markets. Domestic robots are systems used to perform household chores such as vacuuming, mowing the lawn and mopping. While home robot adoption has accelerated in recent years, we believe penetration rates remain low and foresee even higher growth in the future. Although we anticipate improvements in robotics functionalities and lower robot costs to accelerate growth, increasing consumer awareness of these technologies will be the primary growth driver. Currently, robotic vacuums lead the market in units sold, but with consumers becoming more comfortable with robotics, other technologies such as robotic lawnmowers and mops are starting to gain meaningful traction.
- Vacuum: Robotic vacuums, or robovacs, were the first mass market robots to enter the home. Today, the robotic vacuum market accounts for the highest percentage of domestic robots in terms of spend and units shipped. Robovacs retail between $200 and $1,000, with the higher-end models offering longer battery life and WIFI-connectivity. Assuming robot vacuums only accounts for ~20.0% of global vacuum spend, we believe strong growth lies ahead for this domestic sub-market.
- Lawnmower: We believe the robotic lawn mowing market is the second largest domestic robot market in the world. Today, robotic lawn mowers are most common in European countries due to the smaller average lawn size. Robotic lawnmowers are the most expensive domestic robots on the market today with prices ranging from $1,000 to $5,000. We believe the biggest growth catalysts include lower unit costs and improved battery endurance, especially in North America where lawns are much larger.
- Wet Floor: The wet floor robotics market, which includes robots used for mopping and sweeping non-carpeted floors, is the third largest domestic robot market. Although small today, this domestic market has recently started to gain strong momentum across the globe. Specifically, wet floor robots are seeing strong adoption within Asian countries where carpeting is not the norm in most households. These robots are one of the least expensive of all domestic robots and retail from $150 to $300.
Domestic Robot Market to Grow to $4.4B By 2025
We believe a total of 5.1M domestic robots were delivered in 2016, which is up 25.5% from the prior year, and the total market value grew 25.7% y/y to $1.4B. We believe 4.1M robotic vacuums were sold in 2016. Over the next 10 years we anticipate the industry to see double-digit unit growth annually. By 2025, we estimate that 15.5M robot vacuums will be sold, which will equate to a $2.6B market opportunity. Meanwhile, we believe the number of robotic lawnmowers sold will increase from 340K in 2016 to over 1.4M in 2025, representing a 21.0% 10-year CAGR. Although we anticipate robotic lawnmower pricing to come down significantly from where it is today, we believe the market opportunity will exceed $1.0B in the next 10 years. While small today, we believe the wet floor market will see the highest unit and market growth over the next 10-years. We believe the industry shipped 570K wet floor robots in 2016. By 2025, we estimate that over 6.0M wet floor units will be delivered, representing a 33.9% 10-year CAGR. In the exhibit below, we highlight our domestic robot forecast through 2025.
We believe robot adoption within in the home is quickly approaching an inflection point. Consumers are relying on robot automation to perform daily household chores such as vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, as well as mowing the lawn. In total, we believe households will consume over 23.0M domestic robots by 2025, which equates to a $4.4B market opportunity. While we anticipate robotic vacuums to be the largest domestic sub-market, we believe robotic lawn mowers and wet floor products will also see meaningful adoption in the years to come. In addition, we believe advancements in computer vision and robot functionalities will allow new domestic robot markets to emerge. For example, companies today are beginning to leverage drone technology for home security applications. We believe the two largest catalysts to domestic robot growth will be lower unit costs and increasing consumer awareness of the capabilities of robotic technologies.
Next: Military Robots
In our next piece, we’ll look at the ways in which aerial, ground and marine robots are playing a larger role within U.S. and foreign militaries.
Austin Bohlig contributed to this note.
Disclaimer: We actively write about the themes in which we invest: artificial intelligence, robotics, virtual reality, and augmented reality. From time to time, we will write about companies that are in our portfolio. Content on this site including opinions on specific themes in technology, market estimates, and estimates and commentary regarding publicly traded or private companies is not intended for use in making investment decisions. We hold no obligation to update any of our projections. We express no warranties about any estimates or opinions we make.