- Daily Zen
Want to ensure a certain amount of “face time” in office to oversee your team when you need to travel out of town to meet a potentially very big client? Or just craving desperately for a scone and can’t leave your desk?
Enter Anybots new robot QB, your “personal avatar”. QB lets you be part of the action at work, from home or anywhere else, giving you total access and presence where you need it. QB glides around smoothly and quietly – all you need is a web browser to interact with the whole office, lab, factory, or warehouse.
The Anybots QB is manufactured by Anybots, a Californian robotics company founded in 2001 by Trevor Blackwell, located in Mountain View.
The QB “personal avatar” enables people to participate in meetings and other events from afar, with remote workers needing just a web browser to operate an Anybot on-site.
Equipped with a speaker, microphone, camera and video screen, the wifi-enabled device can show a live video of the person operating it, or simply display a still picture, depending on how interactive you want your virtual avatar to be.
Either way, the robot’s eyes glow as long as the user is logged in, so human colleagues know the person is “there” and available for conversation. The Anybot glides around quietly and smoothly, giving the human operating it complete visibility and access to the events going on. When in-person attendees take breaks at conferences or meetings, for example, remote participants are no longer stuck waiting on conference call — rather, they can manipulate the Anybot to mingle in the lobby, taking full advantage of any conversations or happenings going on there.
Similarly, an Anybot can give a telecommuter an ongoing in-house presence, making casual conversations around the watercooler a possibility once again.
Earlier this month, a Mountain View California photographer captured the QB walking down to a local bakery to satisfy a scone-craving of one of the Anybots engineers!
The QB reportedly strolled down the sidewalk and into the bakery, waited in line for his turn like the other customers, and gave his order when asked. He asked about the daily scones specials, ordered one, paid with a $5 bill attached to his “head”, made a few parting comments and left.
How everyday huh?
What’s more, when the barista joked with the bot, asking “Is that for here or to go?”, the bot asked her to put the scone in his bag, paid, telling her to keep the change, and turned to go.
And in remark of most of the surprised customers in the shop taking videos with their cell phones of this entire exchange, the bot said “I didn’t know there’d be so much paparazzi in this coffee shop!”
A bot with a sense of humor, a bot that can flirt, what next???
Weighing 35 pounds and moving at roughly walking speed, Anybots are priced at USD 15,000 and currently available only for shipping within the U.S.