I love a good mystery, especially when I already know the answer. Early this week someone sent Sanford Dickert a grainy video of a sleek looking robot rolling towards the camera. He ran that video on his Pilot Presence blog with the title: "Is Apple Building Robots Now?" A few other blogs picked up the idea. Well Sanford, to answer your question: that machine isn't from Apple, but I have heard it described as the "iPhone of personal robots". Not simply because it shares an appealing aesthetic sense, but because telepresence will be among its first killer applications (hence the video being sent to a blog that discusses TP). I'm dying to tell you all about that device, its developer(s), and its potential to rock the robotics world...but the startup behind this robot wants to keep this under wraps for now. I'm hoping that they will let me unleash the full details soon. In the meantime, check out the mysterious video below to catch a glimpse at a device that could revolutionize personal robotics. I've been in contact with the robot's creator(s) and while this video wasn't released at their request, they've decided to make the most of it and let me share a little bit of what I know. Read more after the break.
16 seconds of grainy footage isn't a lot to base an opinion on, luckily I already saw full sketches and artist renderings of this device months ago. It's amazing how close this rolling prototype is to the original designs I saw. There are things that you can't see in the video that make this robot much more appealing, but (and I apologize again here )I can't share definitive specifications about its hardware and operating systems. However, there are some broad strokes I can paint as to what you should expect:
- it will be a personal robot that consumers can afford
- it will have a great personality that you'll love to be around
- it will have modular upgrades to both its hardware and software
- at least one of its killer applications will be telepresence (infer what you want from that!)
- its similarities to iOS and Android platforms is more than just a slick shell
- its creator(s)/developer(s) have the experience and financial leverage they need to make this robot commercially available in the near term on a larger scale
- it will (hopefully) arrive sooner rather than later
...that's all folks!
Hopefully I'll be able to share more with you very soon. Sorry for the premature post, but I had to let you know that the video was NOT of an Apple robot.
There's no guarantees that the prototype you see in the video will actually fulfill all the phenomenal plans its developer(s) have for it...but trust me, these guys are reaching for the moon.