Robot machine price: How much do they cost?

March 12, 2024
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How much does a robot cost?

So you're interested in getting your first robot. The big question is, how much is this going to set you back? Robot prices can range from a few hundred to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on the type. 

Let’s take a look at some ballpark prices: 

  • For a small hobby robot, you're typically looking at $500 to $3,000. Larger Industrial robots start around $25,000 and go up from there.
  • Additionally, more advanced Six-Axis arms with grippers can be $25,000 or more.
  • And that’s not the end of it! Industrial robot arms are typically $50,000 and up. 
  • Robot grippers, also called end-effectors, range from $1,000 for a simple 2-finger gripper up to $10,000 or more for a complex multi-fingered hand.

What kind of robots can you buy? (Arms, Mobile robots etc)

When it comes to robot types, there are options aplenty: You've got robot arms, Mobile robots, drones, and even full humanoids. 

Let's break down the major categories so you know what's out there.

  • Robot arms

    If you're looking to automate a repetitive task, a robot arm is a great place to start.

    These are stationary robots with multiple joints that can grasp and manipulate objects. Prices range from a few thousand to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on features like number of axes, payload, and programming options.
  • Mobile bots

    Mobile or
    Autonomous robots can navigate environments on their own using sensors and software.

    Options include automated guided vehicles for transporting materials in warehouses, self-driving cars, drones, and robot vacuums/mops for home use.

    Mobile robots tend to cost between $50,000 to $500,000 for commercial use, depending on their capabilities and applications. So, you know, budget accordingly. 
  • Humanoid robots

    The most advanced (and expensive) robots are Humanoids, which are designed to resemble the human body.
    These robots seemed like the province of sci-fi, but prototypes are already being deployed in factories, and we’re starting to see commercial models. 

    More practically, you can find small-scale humanoid robots for under $10,000 that can walk, gesture and interact in a basic way.

What to look for in a robot machine

When shopping for a robot, there are a few key factors to keep in mind based on your needs and budget.

They are: 

  • What do you need the robot to do? 

    Think about what tasks you want the robot to perform
    . Do you need a robot arm for pick and place operations or assembly? Maybe a mobile robot for transportation or surveillance? 

    Different robots have different capabilities
    , so choose one that’s good for your needs. Also consider the precision, speed, payload capacity, and endurance required.

    Higher-performance robots typically cost more.
  • What type of software and programming language do you need? 

    For many robots, the software and programming are just as important as the hardware.
    Consider how intuitive and user-friendly the interface is and whether it has the features you need. 

    Many robots come pre-programmed while others require programming.
    If you're not tech-savvy, look for a robot with simple software or the option to have it programmed for you. Programming fees can add significantly to the overall cost.

    Some newer robots also operate on no-code frameworks that massively simplify things. 
  • Quality and durability

    In general, you get what you pay for with robots. 

    Higher quality robots made of durable materials and components will typically last longer
    and require less maintenance. So, look for a robot with a solid warranty and quality certification. 

    Budget robots may seem appealing upfront but often break down or malfunction quickly, requiring costly repairs or replacement.
  • The invisible additional costs

    Don't forget additional expenses like programming, testing, installation, insurance, and ongoing maintenance

    These added costs, especially for larger industrial robots, can easily exceed the initial purchase price of the robot over its lifetime. Make sure you understand the total cost of ownership before making a purchase!
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Budgeting for a robot machine

So you’ve decided you want to bring a robot into your home or business. The next question is, how much is this going to set you back? Robot prices can vary widely depending on the type and capabilities. 

Let’s take a closer look: 

Consumer robots – typically lower-cost

For personal use, you’ll find options starting around $500 up to $3,000 or more for a high-end model with lots of features

The little dancing robots and mini-vacuums tend to be on the lower end of the range, while a full-sized lawn mowing or pool cleaning robot will be on the higher end.

Industrial robots – start thinking bigger bucks

If you need a robot for manufacturing or other business applications, the price tag rises significantly.

As we said above, an Industrial robotic arm can cost between $25,000 to $400,000 or more, depending on payload, reach, number of axes, and level of precision. 

Mobile robots for warehouse automation and logistics start around $50,000 and go up from there, all the way up the hundreds of thousands. 

How to budget intelligently 

When budgeting for a robot, you need to keep in mind both the initial purchase price as well as ongoing costs like:

  • Maintenance and repairs: Most consumer robots have a 2- to 3-year warranty, so you’ll want to factor in service contracts after that. Industrial robots require routine maintenance to keep them running well!
  • Software and updates: Many advanced robots run on sophisticated software that needs periodic updates to patch security holes, add new features, and keep the robot going properly.
  • Energy usage: Although energy-efficient, robots still need power to operate – which can add to your utility bills over time.
  • Accessories and add-ons: Things like replacement parts, charging stations, programming tools, and other accessories should also be accounted for in your budget.

High-end vs budget robot machines

If you’re on a tight budget, you can still get an affordable robot to experiment with

Entry-level robot kits and pre-built robots typically start around $50 to $500. These include basic kits to build a simple robot, as well as pre-built robots like the EZ Robot JD Humanoid and the Makeblock mBot Robot kit.

Here’s a comparison so you can get the bigger picture more clearly: 

  • Affordable robots. While more basic, these robots are great for learning and smaller projects. They come with essential components like motors, controllers, and programming software to build and operate your robot. If you’re new to robotics, start out with an affordable option to learn the basics before investing in a more advanced robot.
  • High-end robots. Professional and Industrial robots can cost between $10,000 up to $100,000 or more for large manufacturing robots. These high-end robots are more complex, precise and powerful. They’re used for sophisticated applications like complex assembly, hazardous material handling, and high-speed manufacturing.
  • Popular high-end robot options include the Standard Bots RO1, FANUC LR Mate 200iD, and the KUKA KR 6 R700 Sixx. These robots have much higher payloads, more powerful motors and controllers, advanced software for complex programming and tighter precision and accuracy. And, in the case of RO1, you don’t even need to know how to code! 

While the initial cost of a high-end robot is quite expensive, they do have a good return on investment – just 1-3 years! 

Summing up

At the end of the day, the cost of a robot really depends on your needs. Sure, those fancy high-end models seem awesome, but a more budget-friendly option can totally get the job done too. 

Just figure out exactly what you want your robot to do, set a reasonable budget, and start shopping around!

Next steps 

Looking to skyrocket your production capabilities? RO1 by Standard Bots offers a revolutionary no-code robot arm that's transforming the landscape for both burgeoning startups and industry veterans alike.

  • Cost-effective tech: With a price tag half that of similar products, it democratizes advanced automation for companies large and small.
  • Performance that sets benchmarks: RO1 stands out with its Six-Axis Industrial robot arm, featuring a best-in-class 18 kg payload and unparalleled speed and precision.
  • Safety is paramount: Equipped with the most recent sensors and safety technologies, RO1 guarantees safe collaborative operations. 
  • Innovative learning and adaptability: RO1's sophisticated AI, comparable to GPT-4, effortlessly navigates new environments and challenges within a user-friendly no-code setup, eliminating the need for coding expertise.

Explore RO1 with a free 30-day trial. Our dedicated team is on hand to assist with the seamless integration of RO1's transformative features into your workflow.

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