CyberDog is a new ominous-looking robot from Xiaom


Chinese technology giant Xiaomi has unveiled a four-legged robot called CyberDog: an experimental, open source machine that the company says “has unprecedented potential.”

CyberDog is the latest example of technology companies adopting four-legged design technology in robotics. The most significant example of the trend is the machine Spot built by the American company Boston Dynamics. Point went on sale last year $ 74,500 and has been used for many purposes, starting inventory of hazardous mines to help doctors contact patients remotely. It has also been tested both law enforcement agencies and the armybut not as a weapon.

It is not clear for what purpose Xiaomi is designing CyberDog. In a press release, the company stressed the open source nature of the machine design and that it initially released only 1,000 devices for “Xiaomi fans, engineers and robot enthusiasts.” The company hopes these first users will “contribute to the development and potential of quadruple robots.” The same press release emphasizes the “pet-like nature” of the machine, including its ability to respond to voice commands and track its owner like a real dog. However, the real propeller is the price: Xiaomi says the robot costs only 9,999 yuan, or about $ 1,540.

However, looking at the CyberDog images, it is clear that Xiaomi will not present the machine as a competitor to Aibo, Sony’s own robot. While the Aibo is small and cute, CyberDog is sleek and futuristic – even a little intimidating. The renderings of the machine make it look like the main character in a sci-fi TV show, walking up the stairs and showing up as a silhouette in the doorways. Inevitable comparisons Black mirrorThe Metalhead episode is done, as always.

Xiaomi says the CyberDog is agile enough to kickback, able to shake at 3.2 m / s (compared to Spot’s 3.9 m / s) and weigh 3 kg (compared to Spot’s 5.2 kg). CyberDog is powered by Nvidia’s Jetson Xavier AI platform and is equipped with several cameras and sensors. These include touch sensors, a GPS module, a ultra-wide-angle fisheye lens and an Intel RealSense D450 camera for depth detection. These components allow the robot to be navigated semi-automatically.

“CyberDog can analyze its environment in real time, create navigation maps, draw its destination and avoid obstacles. Combined with tracking human posture and facial recognition, CyberDog is able to track the owner and jump around obstacles, ”Xiaomi says. The device can also respond to voice commands, including the recognition of alarm words and instructions, or it can be controlled using a connected smartphone application.

CyberDog also has three USB-C ports and one HDMI port that Xiaom says can be used to customize the hardware. The company suggests that lidar sensors, panoramic cameras and searchlights can be added to the robot.

Xiaomin’s CyberDog is very similar to the Boston Dynamic’s Spot robot.
Photo: Xiaomi

The CyberDog released by Xiaom is very interesting, though not necessarily as a standalone product. Instead, it says a lot about the current robotics landscape and the accessibility of this technology.

Boston Dynamics made the four-stage form of robots popular, and companies around the world are now exploring exactly how and where such machines can be effectively deployed. However, the cost of this equipment has dropped, allowing new uses to be investigated. Earlier this year, the Chinese robotics company Unitree released a four-legged bot that cost only $ 2,700, and Xiaom’s own CyberDog is below it again. It is clear that the characteristics of these machines are not identical, but wider access to technology shows whether it is profitable to support these companies at all.

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