Robot Servants? 3 Reasons Why Americans Are Still Reluctant


Tech companies continue to research and develop new ways to use robots in everyday lives from greeting people at stores to assembling Ikea furniture in a hurry. However, a recent study shows there are many who don’t want a robot handling certain tasks around the home.

A US survey of 2,021 people conducted online by the Brookings Institution showed that a slight majority of those surveyed, 52 percent, believe robots will perform most human activities in 30 years. A larger majority, however, didn’t care for droids, with 61 percent saying they were somewhat to very uncomfortable with robots, which would explain why there are certain jobs the respondents didn’t want robots to be responsible for.

No Robots Security Guards

A total of 67 percent of respondents answered they would not be interested in robots providing security for their homes. Home security robots are still years away from becoming a reality, but a mall in Washington, DC used a droid to scan the faces of mall-goers last year. The problem was that the robot committed suicide by taking a long walk into a fountain thanks to an issue with its guidance system.

Roomba Is Enough

In 2016, Roomba maker iRobot said 20 percent of the world’s vacuum cleaners are robots. While the small robotic vacuum is used in homes, 68 percent of those surveyed said they did not want a robot to help with cleaning duties around the house. Those who insist on not having a robot clean around the house will miss out on sleek-looking bots such as the Star Wars limited edition Samsung POWERbot.

Keep the Metal Hands Off the Family

Survey respondents were the least interested in having robots provide care to a child or aging family member, with 84 percent declaring they were either very or somewhat disinterested. Even though the people surveyed didn’t care for this job to be done by droids, a report from Penn State in 2016 showed adults were more likely to interact with robots if they had greater exposure to them in movies.

Other responses from the survey included 32 percent who thought the US government should set up a Federal Robotics Commission. Also, only 38 percent are expecting robots to make their lives easier.

Another interesting bit of info from the survey is that 61 percent were not worried about robots. That number might change when they see the latest running robot from Boston Dynamics.

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