I Cannot Take Amazon’s New Robot for Business Seriously

I Cannot Take Amazon’s New Robot for Business Seriously

Amazon just released a questionable-looking robot for patrolling businesses. Taking a page out of Wall-E’s design, Amazon’s new Astro for Business looks almost comical.

Retailing for $US2,349, Astro for Business launched in the US today. Like its previous Home version, the Astro goes around your businesses autonomously or is controlled via a remote. It features an HD periscope camera with night vision, a 24/7 live view, and two-way talk.

Astro’s retail price isn’t all you’ll be paying for. You’ll also have to finance the different subscription services for it to patrol your business. First, the Virtual Security Guard subscription will allow the robot to notify Ring’s Rapid Response agents whenever the need arises. This could be when an unfamiliar person, an unusual sound, or strange activity is detected on your business premises.

But to access Virtual Security Guard, users have to pay for two more subscriptions. These are Ring Protect Pro and Astro Secure, and they cost $US20 and $US60 a month, respectively. Ring Protect Pro allows users to save the recorded footage for up to 180 days and sync it with Ring motion sensors and alarms. Astro Secure’s job is to let the Astro patrol on routes users customize. It also allows it to send alerts to the user and autonomously go closer to unusual activity to get a deeper look.

It is the successor to Astro for Home, a cheaper robot for homes that was launched last year. The Home version retails for $US1,599 and is intended to help users monitor their babies, pets, or any strange activity in their house. Astra for Business is marketed as a more hardcore version of the Home designed to patrol larger spaces — up to 5,000 sq. ft.

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