The Robit social robot is one of the cheapest home service robots around, coming in at £250. With its big blue eyes atop a shiny white body, Robit doesn’t look anything spectacular, but it’s taking on the likes of Jibo and Buddy.
The reason Machisto, the robot’s maker, was able to price it so low is because it’s essentially a Raspberry Pi computer, with a few extras added on, such as sensors and a set of wheels so it can get around quickly.
A number of fuctions are available out of the box, including driving it around your home, guarding your house if you go out and taking a photo of any intruder, or telling it to dance the macarena. If it does need to ake a photo of someone entering your home, it’l send a picture of that person to your phone, so you can get home if you don’t recognise them or call the police if it seems to be a break-in.
Developers can add on functions using the open source software, which could include anything from creating a facial recognition app to decde whether the person in the house is known or unknown, finding your keys if you lose them, controlling the robot from a web interface or smartwatch or playing games.
Because Robit uses open source code, it’s perfect to use in schools to educate children how to code, or can be purchased by parets for their children who have an interest in technology.
The company didn’t manage to hit its funding target on Indiegogo despite attracting a lot of media attention, but this could of course be because Maschito is not a known company in the computing world, like Sphero or Wowwee.