Diving into the expensive fad of robotic pets isn’t viable for everyone. Therefore, some companies are constantly working to bridge the price gap and make these robots affordable for more consumers. Tech titan Xiaomi joined this list when it announced its quadruped — a fancy term for “four-legged” — robot called CyberDog.
Xiaomi‘s CyberDog is a limited-edition robot that you can buy for a competitive price of $1,540 or 9,999 RMB (roughly around 1.18lacs). Compare this to the eye-watering $74,500 that Boston Dynamics charges for Spot, and you’ll understand why Xiaomi’s offering is attractive. Adding to that, CyberDog is even more affordable than fellow Chinese firm Unitree Robotics’s Unitree Go1, which costs $2,700.
However, it’s important to note that this is Xiaomi’s first such venture and is nowhere as refined as that of Boston Dynamics. Besides that, it isn’t being mass-manufactured, like the Unitree Go1, either. In fact, Xiaomi announced that only 1000 CyberDogs would go up for sale initially, and even these are for the robotics enthusiast rather than the average consumer. Here’s a video glimpse of the CyberDog’s capabilities.
Thanks to this cutting-edge tech, CyberDog can even detect and avoid nearby obstacles. It means that, usually, the robot will be able to move around on its own. But, if you want, you can control its movement and actions using your voice, the bundled remote controller, or the smartphone app.
Running on NVIDIA’s Jetson Xavier NX, an AI supercomputer, CyberDog quickly processes the data it gathers via its sensors. This translates into Xiaomi’s robot reacting to its surroundings in a quick and intelligent manner.
Moreover, Xiaomi’s servo motors ensure the CyberDog can perform an array of complicated physical activities. From following you on a path to doing a backflip (just because it can), the robotic dog never ceases to amaze. Now, coming to pure stats, it can carry a payload of up to 3kg and move as fast as 3.2m/s.
Xiaomi CyberDog is an open-source project
Apparently, with these futuristic features, Xiaomi wants to bring more research value to the table rather than commercial value. Owing to this reason, Xiaomi’s CyberDog is an open-source product built using open-source algorithms. In other words, developers can freely modify it to include personalized upgrades.
To facilitate the development of the open-source robot, it also comes with an HDMI slot and 3 USB Type-C slots. These ports allow users to integrate external devices, such as LiDAR, searchlight, motion cameras, etc., into it. By going the open-source way, Xiaomi hopes to accelerate the advancement of its four-legged robot companion.
By the way, would you want to shell out money for a robotic pet? Do you see them becoming a norm in the future? Let us know in the comments. Enough about mechanical dogs; check out this article on beach creatures made from plastic tubes.