Globalization and robotics (globotics) are transforming the world economy at an explosive pace since they are driven by digital technology that is advancing in phenomenal increments. This paper — which should be considered a ‘thought piece’ — argues that the globotics transformation is likely to disable the traditional manufacturing-led development ‘journey’ of the type China is taking, while enabling the service-led development journey of the type India is following. We start with a historical perspective on the current transformation before turning to a consideration of the technology and a closer look at the economic logic that is making manufacturing jobless and services traded. Finally, we discuss how one might conceptualize service-led development.