IFR press release

31 million robots helping in households worldwide by 2019

Frankfurt, 20 December 2016 - The worldwide number of domestic household robots will rise to 31 million between 2016 and 2019. The sales value of robots cleaning floors, mowing lawns, and cleaning swimming pools will grow to about 13 billion US dollars in this period. These forecasts are takes from the 2016 World Robotics Report, "Service Robots", published by the International Federation of Robotics (IFR).


"Robotics in personal and domestic applications has experienced strong global growth with relatively few mass-market products: floor cleaning robots, lawn mowers and edutainment robots are dominating the market," says Joe Gemma, President of the International Federation of Robotics. "But the next generation of robots will have even greater capabilities and will open up new fields of application."

Robots as domestic helpers

In the coming years, vacuum and floor cleaning robots will continue to make up the lion's share of units at work in households. Sales will rise from 3.6 million units (2015) to around 30 million units within the 2016-2019 forecast period. Vacuum and floor cleaning robots account for 96 percent of domestic robot sales. Robotic mowers and pool cleaning robots rank second and third, respectively.

Entertainment robots

Sales figures for the entertainment sector show a similar dynamic. In 2015, the total number of toy robots, remote-controlled multi-media robots and personal edutainment robots amounted to 1.7 million units. The IFR forecasts that this market will grow to 11 million units between 2016 and 2019. Toy and hobby robots account for 70 percent of the market share in the entertainment segment.

Assistive robots for the handicapped and elderly

Strong growth is reported in sales of handicap assistive robots and for the elderly. At 4,700 units (2015), the sales volume is still comparatively low. But sales figures are expected to rise to 37,500 units from 2016 to 2019. The rise in the value of sales will mirror this development: Sales in 2015 amounted to USD 16.8 million - a year-on-year increase of 34 percent. The total value is forecast to rise to USD 97 million between 2016 and 2019.


The Puzzlebox Orbit is a brain-controlled helicopter used to practice skills of concentration and mental relaxation. The Orbit provides positive feedback in a fun, visual, and physical way for students and adults alike who wish to learn how to better achieve and maintain focus or relax and relieve stress. Based on reading brainwaves with an EEG headset, free, open source software will instruct the helicopter to hover, spin, or fly across the room. (Image credit: Gene Ekster)

Olive is an intelligent personal suitcase that is able to interact with its user via some useful applications. It can follow its owner with a segway-like locomotion system and 3D deph camera image processing and can be transformed to a vehicle that can rapidly transport its owner. (Image credit: IKAP Robotics (IDEH KAVAN PARSI))

Aisoy1 V5, the first emotional robot for children education. It is a powerful almost magical device that enables people of all ages to explore and learn how to program social robots in languages like Scratch, Blockly and Python. It is capable of doing most of the things you'd expect a social robot to do, from talking, to feeling if you touch it or move it and playing games. (Image credit: Aisoy Robotics S.L.)