🇬🇧Competitive Intelligence and New Markets: Sex Robots and Surrounding
Archive, March 19, 2019, sex robots markets develop by AI
In competitive, the legal sex market (last year of reliable overall estimates 2015) moved around $120 billion. The data, which does not take into account the prostitution markets, presents growth rates of the order of 7% per year. PornHub’s regular insights are an excellent litmus test for cross-checking the health state of the sector.
Those who thought that the ‘all free’ road on the net, undertaken by some of the major players for several years, would lead to the disappearance of commonly understood pornography had to recreate : the sector has reshaped on niches becoming trainers, such as real-time personal cams. Under another perspective, the ‘toys’ market has never been disrupted in growth : it has moved fully into e-commerce, expanding in articulation and offer.
To support the constancy of growth on the one hand, as always, the technological advancement with regard the connections and sophistication of the devices and under in terms of the performance of on-line sales platforms. In other ways (and curiously) to the climate of social obscurantism dictated by ‘politically correct’, which has gradually pervaded over the past 10 years the daily, television productions have made counterweight. They, more or less elegantly, helped to clear and make public the sexuality of the individual sphere.
Now the technology is putting irons on the fire in the form of artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR) and robotics. The three things are distinct only in the name : without the sophistication of the performance of the first the second don’t have, in the sex-related markets, very much sense.
The AI/VR binomy is the most distant to materialise. The physical reality is given by the spatial usage of the 5 senses : in some areas they are not all necessary and, therefore, it is not efficient to digitize them to virtualizations. Storage, industrial maintenance, video games, weapons, museum applications are current examples in which view, hearing and touch (perhaps even at the elementary level and through interfaces of not always easy use) are enough to cover the true : intuitively, for the necessary components of the sex market, the road to go is still very long.
Robots are different. They have physicality and through AI are progressing daily in their tasks entrusted to them and in the interaction with humans. In the sex-market they are the evolution of the old dolls. On the anthropomorphic side, the devices have followed the evolution of materials and the manufacturers, currently, put up for sale high-impact and multi-gender models.
The next new thing to come is the interaction allowed by AI, already offered by some models at elementary level. It will allow to break down the wall of the one-sided dialectic, which currently characterises this kind of (for now pseudo) cyborgs like others with comparable social functions (elderly care, hospitalization etc).
Even in this case we don’t talk about WestWorld tomorrow morning : never end repeating that all AI applications are today in the in the early days. However, the sex robot sector is currently valued at about $30 billion (of the overall seen before) where the largest number are US companies, very young and aggressive under innovation and experimentation.
Similarly the polemics mount about the ethical framework due to this type of cyborgs. The positive and negative issues touch the interpersonal relationships, inclusion in the sphere of sexuality of disability and other border line (under this optics) categories (lonely old people, poor people…). Others about hypothetical endorsement to pathological perversions that the action towards a machine, instead of a human, would allow. Never as in this case is to talk about nothing, being the story in reality still not only to be written but also only to be imagined.
This post was originally published on March 3, 2019, in Italian version on www.thescanner.info .This is adaptation of a neuronal Italian/English AI translation by IBM Watson.