Provisional definition of Service Robots
Service robots have no strict internationally accepted definition, which, among other things, delimits them from other types of equipment, in particular the manipulating industrial robot. IFR, however, have adopted a preliminary definition:
A service robot is a robot which operates semi- or fully autonomously to perform services useful to the well-being of humans and equipment, excluding manufacturing operations.
With this definition, manipulating industrial robots could also be regarded as service robots, provided they are installed in non-manufacturing operations. Service robots may or may not be equipped with an arm structure as is the industrial robot. Often, but not always, the service robots are mobile. In some cases, service robots consist of a mobile platform on which one or several arms are attached and controlled in the same mode as the arms of the industrial robot.
Because of their multitude of forms and structures as well as application areas, service robots are not easy to define.
Since 2007 a working group of ISO is revising the ISO 8373 which finally will include an official definition of service robots.