What does iPhone have to do with robots?

8 thoughts on “What does iPhone have to do with robots?”

    1. I left my iPhone on top of a toaster oven briefly before realizing my mistake. When I picked it up the home screen was displaying a caution message that it was overheating and needed to cool off before being used. They don’t seem to advertise it, but it has one. It may be similar to the moisture sensor(s) that detect if an iPhone gets soaked. The purpose may be more to help for Apple to avoid repairing or replacing water and heat damage on warrantied products than for the user, so there’s little incentive for Apple to advertise the presence of those sensors.

  1. I’ve been telling anyone who cares to listen for the past couple of years that robotics is Apple’s next wild frontier. They’re acquiring all the skills necessary to eventually mass produce affordable, reliable and most importantly, desirable, robotic devices for the consumer market. I have no idea what their use would be but then Apple is the master of producing goods which the rest of the market did not see a need and then dominating it.
    Of course this is a long term prediction, I’m guessing no less than ten years from now – surely no-one expects them to still just be making computers and smartphones in 2022?

  2. I respectfully disagree with the premise herein. The most expensive parts of a robot are the motors, bearings and other mechanical parts. These parts have become cheaper with time but not because of smartphones. Processors are rarely amongst the high cost components (15 years ago, I worked for a company that made industrial robots, the microprocessor cost $45 while the robot sold for $35k). Furthermore, the sensors used in a smartphone are rarely essential sensors in a robot. Instead, encoders are. They are not ultra expensive but the cost increases with degrees of freedom. These sensors are also not found on smartphones.

    1. He did say it was sub-25,000 so it’s not like he was saying they were pocket change. Moreover, the industrial robots of 15 years ago are not the type of robots this article is talking about. The author took a whole paragraph discussing why these robots are different from robots of the past. The point is that while they are simpler, because of the the smartphone revolution they can be programmed to do more stuff because there’s a proliferation of not just cheap but repurposed sensors that can be used in new ways that were never even considered 15 years ago.

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