At its new event, Amazon introduced a new Alexa-enabled robot, Astro, that walks around the house and is able to climb stairs.
The Astro robot includes all the traditional features of an Echo device, namely playing TV shows, displaying information and making video calls - but it's also designed to follow users and navigate around pets and other obstacles using front-facing cameras and is gaining intelligence of its own.
"The goal is to make Astra a 'smart robot' and allow some simple but interesting interactions with people," says a robotics paper. It has wheels, comes equipped with a screen, and even cameras. The robot can also carry small objects around the house.
The Astro robot maps the user's home, creates a heat map of spots where the robot is likely to encounter various obstacles or be more in contact with humans, namely such as hallways, doorways and kitchens. Amazon product chief David Limp said the robot is analogous
Users who have subscribed to the Amazon Ring Protect Pro service will be able to access more advanced robot monitoring features. Astro should also be able to help seniors with some tasks.
In a first stage, to have Astro it is necessary to be part of a paid trial program, which will have to be accessed by invitation. By entering this program, the user will have to pay, in a first stage, the amount of 1,000 dollars. Later this amount will rise to 1,500 dollars.
Astro will bring artificial intelligence into users' homes, and has a release date later this year. It's also integrated with other Amazon devices, like Alexa Together and Ring Protect Pro, and comes with a free six-month trial, where the user can decide if it suits Astro.