Boston Dynamics latest version of the cute robo-dog Spot can return to its docking bay to recharge when needed. Now your robot dog will always be ready to perform.
The famous dog-like Spot robot of Boston Dynamics has gained more capabilities that would make it more appealing to the customers.
This agile robot is already loved by many for its utility and is taking on jobs in all kinds of fields around the globe.
A newer version of this four-legged machine is equipped with remote control software and a new robotic arm attachment, while it can also recharge itself.
Named Enterprise Spot, the new version comes with a purpose-built dock. When in need of a recharge, the robot can detect the dock and sit on it in the charging position – either through programming or a button on the associated tablet interface.
The multi-purpose dock also allows the robot to upload data collected during its mission through an Ethernet connection.
Moreover, Boston Dynamics has upgraded the hardware for Spot Enterprise, which offers greater safety and communications capability and allows autonomous operation across a greater range.
The new web-based software, called Scout, enables operators to control Spot Enterprise virtually. So, the robot can be set for pre-programmed autonomous missions or you can control it manually as it goes about its business and performs different tasks.
Back in 2018, Boston Dynamics demonstrated a manipulator arm attachment for its robot that used onboard sensors to open a doorway for a fellow robot. The new Spot Arm is 4K-camera-equipped and customer-ready version of this technology. It allows the operator to have their robot hold, lift and carry different objects, pull levers, push buttons, open valves and turn knobs and handles to open doors.
Since the start of sales for Spot in September of 2019, the robot has been given all sorts of jobs – from herding sheep in New Zealand to scanning Ford factories for retooling, to inspecting construction sites in London, to protecting healthcare workers from COVID-19.
According to the company, more than 400 Spots are now out there in the world doing different jobs. It expressed the hope that the new features introduced in Spot Enterprise will broaden their appeal.
Boston Dynamics CEO Robert Playter says that since the first launch of Spot they have worked closely with their customers to identify and learn how the robot could best support the applications that are critical to their mission.
He shared that most of their customers want reliable data collection in difficult, remote, and dynamic worksites and the company has developed new products with these needs in mind.
Playter said their goal is to make such robots that can regularly and remotely perform inspections and other operations.