How to make money with robots

One analyst told CNBC that could be the year robots become a force to be reckoned with.

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But instead of fearing a rise of the machines, humans should look at how they can invest in them. Don Klumpp Photographer's Choice Getty Images James Ross, senior portfolio manager at Alliance Bernstein, told CNBC that will see the sector reaching a "critical mass" and is primed for growth with recent advancements in technology.

There's a number of different stock plays out there according to Ross. The growth of 3-D printing - creating three-dimensional solid objects from digital models - means companies like Proto Labs and Stratasys are attracting interest, he said.

Self-driving cars and home-cleaning robots are already emerging as well.

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FANUCthe world's largest maker of industrial robots, produces factory robots used in China's giant manufacturing sector and is a good investment option, according to Ross.

Intuitive Surgical, which is making hospitals more efficient by performing surgical operations, is another attractive option, he said. Ross also singled out iRobot as attractive despite its exposure to the production of military automation - budgets in the sector are beginning to be reduced.

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Ross says that a medical solution made by the firm, which is effectively a monitor on a "stick" that allows doctors to remotely visit hospital patients, offers potential. Alliance How to make money with robots predicts there will be two clear phases in this "automation revolution".

It will begin with the manufacturing sector pushing the growth rate in the world market for automated products from around 6.

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Then byit expects a second phase to kick in, with automation spreading to the services sector.