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RobOps

The next steps in our RobOps journey

Florian Pestoni

Today, InOrbit announced our latest funding news, with $2.6 million in seed round funding to help us on our goal to support 1 million robots that will positively impact the lives of 1 billion people.

We started InOrbit more than 2 years ago to help accelerate the adoption of robotics at scale. At the time, there were no good platforms to manage fleets of robots in the field, and most companies had to cobble together tools that were hard to maintain, and often didn’t work as their fleet grew.

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Software-Defined X

Florian Pestoni

Over the last two decades, we’ve seen the evolution of hardware virtualization that resulted in the cloud as we know it today. It started with Virtual Machines and then expanded to include Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and Software-Defined Storage (SDS).

Software-defined networking is “an approach to networking that uses software-based controllers or application programming interfaces (APIs) to direct traffic on the network and communicate with the underlying hardware infrastructure.” (Source: VMWare) Similarly, software-defined storage separates the management and provisioning of storage from the underlying physical hardware.

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Creative Destruction

Florian Pestoni

Creative destruction. Sounds cool, doesn’t it? If you’re picturing a demolition derby with decorated cars driven by artists and designers… that’s not it at all.

The gale of creative destruction was first introduced by economist Joseph Shumpeter in 1942, to describe the “process of industrial mutation that incessantly revolutionizes the economic structure from within, incessantly destroying the old one, incessantly creating a new one”.

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Verizon Built on 5G Challenge

Keith

We are excited to share that InOrbit is one of a small number of companies that have been selected as finalists for Verizon’s Built on 5G Challenge. This was an extremely competitive process, with over 500 innovators vying for the top spots. A couple of weeks ago, we got a unique chance to present to key Verizon executives and were impressed by their drive to enable innovation. The set up was a bit like a Shark Tank episode. Here’s a quick video the Verizon team put together.

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RoboBusiness 2019 Recap

Florian Pestoni

The InOrbit team recently had a chance to showcase Mission Control, our cloud-based robot management platform, at RoboBusiness. This event has become one of the most important in the industry, attracting the most innovative robotics companies as well as a business audience hungry for technology to help tackle some of the hardest problems across different industries.

We had a really busy week, including co-organizing the first face-to-face meeting of the Robot Operations Working Group, presenting on stage in front of +100 people at Pitchfire, and moderating a panel on Best Practices for Robotics Operations at Scale, with great panelists from Brain Corp, Qualcomm and Service Robotics & Technologies.

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Robotics vs. IoT

Florian Pestoni

Another day, another Demo Day. Last week we had the privilege of being among a select group of startups to show the latest and greatest in the IoT world, ranging from photonics to wireless power transmission, at the latest Plug and Play Demo Day for Internet of Things. This was a big event, with many corporate partners and investors in attendance.

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A big week at InOrbit

Florian Pestoni

Few things are more devastating for a startup than to be working on the wrong problem. That’s why we spent time early on, before we had even formed our company or written the first line of code, to make sure we were working on a real problem that has a significant impact for a large number of people. We met with dozens of people across the robotics landscape to learn, asked lots of open-ended questions and listened carefully, honing our pattern-recognition.

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So you want to be a roboteer?

Florian Pestoni

It seems that every week there’s news about a new amazing application of robotics, from e-commerce, to growing food or building houses. While for many people this may seem to be something for the distant future, it is happening now and will continue to scale rapidly over the next couple of years.

This rapid acceleration results from a convergence of factors, including advances in sensors, deep learning and computer vision algorithms, chipsets that can handle AI tasks and software standards such as the Robot Operating System (ROS).

We’ve seen this before

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RoboBusiness recap

Florian Pestoni

The annual convention of leaders in robotics took place September 25-27 in Santa Clara, CA. RoboBusiness is the prime conference on the business of robotics, with world-class speakers and top exhibitors from around the world.

At InOrbit we chose RoboBusiness for our commercial launch. The interest far exceeded our expectations: the traffic at our booth was virtually non-stop, often with multiple conversations going on with members of our team at once.

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5 blockers to robot adoption

Florian Pestoni

The market for autonomous service robots is on the verge of a massive expansion. This has been largely driven by advancements in core technologies such as computer vision as well as lower cost of key hardware components and a standardized software stack.

Like we’ve seen with other technology waves such as cloud and mobile, venture capital is pouring into the robotics space, tripling in size from 2016 to 2017 and reaching +5B in 2017 by some estimates, which in turn is attracting more startups tackling an incredible variety of problems, from life-saving to mundane.

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