The Stack Archive

Autonomous unicycle robot offers new approach to home and office security

Wed 6 Aug 2014

A self-levelling, wheel-shaped robot designed by Arizona-based start-up Roambotics, has been unveiled and recognised by market leaders.

The autonomous robot, called Jr., travels through the house or office sending out wireless alerts to the users’ smartphones and tablets.

Jr. contains four cameras, a microphone, WiFi and Bluetooth capabilities, as well as data plan options. The robot can produce almost 360 degree high-quality video footage, as well as still photos, of different rooms, which are fed through to an accompanying app, and stored in the Roambotics cloud.

The freestanding robot will be able to, for example, send a message to the owner if an intruder enters the property notifying them of a break-in.

Unlike previous home security robots, Roambotics’ Jr. decides autonomously where to patrol inside the house or workplace. The handle will also permit the user to pick it up and move it to another desired location.

“Our primary advantage over existing security systems is that there is no invasive installation, our software uses machine learning to get smarter over time, and the device does not remain in a static, predictable position,” said Roambotics CEO and co-founder Scott Menor.

As well as its targeted use as a wheeling surveillance device, Roambotics plans to also develop Jr. for other uses, such as documenting events, watching over children or the elderly, and as a 3D mapping system.

Jr. has already received industry support and has recently been awarded the Proto Labs Cool Idea! Award – a programme which looks to help turn promising concepts into market-ready products. Speaking on behalf of Proto Lab’s Cool Idea! Award, founder Larry Lukis said: “We were attracted by the friendly, non-threatening unicycle form factor of the Roambotics Jr.

“The intriguing design is both aesthetic and functional, and we’re excited that the Cool Idea! Award can help advance the Jr. toward commercial reality.”


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