View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you

Tesla will launch humanoid robots by 2025, says Elon Musk

The billionaire entrepreneur said that Tesla’s ‘Optimus’ humanoid robots will be capable of performing complex factory tasks by the end of this year. 

By Greg Noone

Tesla aims to sell a humanoid robot by 2025, says its chief executive Elon Musk. During an earnings call with investors, Musk said that although Tesla’s ‘Optimus’ line of humanoid robots was still being developed in the laboratory, the devices were now capable of performing simple tasks in a factory setting and would likely be able to complete more complex duties by the end of this year. However, the billionaire added that these timelines were fungible. 

“I think Optimus will be more valuable than everything else combined because if you’ve got a sentient humanoid robot that is able to navigate reality and do tasks at request, there is no meaningful limit to the size of the economy,” said Musk. “I think Tesla is best positioned of any humanoid robot maker to be able to reach volume production with efficient inference on the robot itself.”

A photo of Tesla's Optimus humanoid robot, used to illustrate a story about humanoid robots.
Tesla chief executive Elon Musk has previously said that humanoid robots will be the key that enables the firm to become a multi-trillion dollar company. (Photo by Shutterstock)

Growing market for humanoid robots

Tesla originally announced Optimus in 2022, promising that the humanoid robot would be a “general purpose, bipedal, autonomous humanoid robot capable of performing unsafe, repetitive or boring tasks.” Since then, the company has published occasional video updates documenting the robot’s milestones. In February, for example, Musk shared a clip of an Optimus unit walking across a Tesla factory floor, following a video two months previously depicting the automaton poaching an egg

If released in 2025, Optimus would join a burgeoning market for humanoid robots capable of performing tasks on assembly lines. Previously considered to be little more than exhibition pieces – Honda’s ASIMO, for example, was discontinued in 2022 after spending two decades as a marketing tool – bipedal automatons have now been deployed in factories belonging to BMW and Mercedes. Recent advances in AI have also spurred interest among big tech players in creating advanced robotic devices: earlier this month, for instance, Google Deepmind announced that it has harnessed new techniques in deep reinforcement learning to get miniature humanoid robots to play a compelling game of football

Tesla profits decline, but Optimus thought key to long-term expansion

Musk’s announcement of a prospective release date for Optimus comes after Tesla announced a 55% decline in its first-quarter profits, as it faces increased competition in the electric vehicles market. In the short term, the firm has announced that it will rein in its expenditures by making up to 9% of its workforce redundant. Work on Optimus, however, will continue, with Musk stating in January that its investment in humanoid robots had the potential to transform Tesla into a $10trn company (the firm had a market capitalisation of $460.77bn at the time of writing.) 

Musk also claimed that Tesla would “solve autonomy” for vehicles in the next few years. The billionaire was cautious, however, on the prospect of Optimus being able to autonomously navigate all of its surroundings – or whether that would even be desirable. “If we have a super-sentient humanoid robot that can follow you indoors and that you can escape, we’re talking terminator risk,” he said. “And yes, I’d be uncomfortable with [that].”

Read more: Humanoid robots: separating fact from science fiction

Content from our partners
Scan and deliver
GenAI cybersecurity: "A super-human analyst, with a brain the size of a planet."
Cloud, AI, and cyber security – highlights from DTX Manchester

Websites in our network
Select and enter your corporate email address Tech Monitor's research, insight and analysis examines the frontiers of digital transformation to help tech leaders navigate the future. Our Changelog newsletter delivers our best work to your inbox every week.
  • CIO
  • CTO
  • CISO
  • CSO
  • CFO
  • CDO
  • CEO
  • Architect Founder
  • MD
  • Director
  • Manager
  • Other
Visit our privacy policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.