Demographic changes are putting the healthcare industry under pressure. However, while other industries have been able to automate their operation through robotic and autonomous systems, the healthcare sector is still reluctant to change. What makes robotic innovation in healthcare so difficult? Despite offering more efficient, and consumer-friendly care, the assistive robotics market has lacked penetration. To answer this question, we have broken down the development process, taking a market transformation perspective. By interviewing assistive robotics companies at different business stages from France and the UK, this paper identifies new insight into the main barriers of the assistive robotics market that are inhibiting the sector. Their impact is analysed during the different stages of the development, exploring how these barriers affect the planning, conceptualisation and adoption of these solutions. This research presents a foundation for understanding innovation barriers that high-tech ventures face in the healthcare industry, and the need for public policy measures to support these technology-based firms.
Keywords: assistive robotics; barriers to innovation; healthcare innovation; market barriers.