Ten years ago, Amazon launched the Kindle and created the appeal of reading on a digital device. Four years ago, Jeff Bezos and his team launched Echo, a smart speaker that lets us talk to computers. And now, Amazon is betting quite a bit on a new market: home robots. This is a secret and […]
Ten years ago, Amazon launched the Kindle and created the appeal of reading on a digital device. Four years ago, Jeff Bezos and his team launched Echo, a smart speaker that lets us talk to computers.
And now, Amazon is betting quite a bit on a new market: home robots.
This is a secret and ambitious project of retailers and cloud computing. The code name of this project is “Vesta”, named after the goddess of warmth, family and home of the Romans. Currently, Gregg Zehr, head of Amazon’s Lab126 hardware development and research division, is in charge of Vesta. Lab126 is responsible for developing Echo speakers, set-top-boxes Fire TVs, tablet Fire and smart Phone fire.
The Vesta project started several years ago but this year it has increased its recruitment. Lab126 is currently recruiting dozens of positions related to robot development for Vesta. According to internal sources, Amazon will begin testing its employees’ home-made robots by the end of the year and may be available commercially in early 2019. However, everything can change and the project part Amazon’s hard drive sometimes stopped in the development phase.
An Amazon spokesman said the company had no comment on the rumors.
At present, it is unclear what Amazon’s family robots can do. Internal sources speculate that the Vesta robot could be a portable Alexa assistant, accompanying the owner in areas where there are no Echo devices in the home. This robot prototype is equipped with advanced camera and software to be able to move indoors like a self-driving vehicle.
This project is very different from the robots created by Amazon Robotics, Amazon’s German subsidiary. Amazon Robotics creates merchandising robots working in Amazon’s warehouses. Initially, these robots were built by Kiva Systems, a company acquired by Amazon for $ 775 million in 2012.
In recent years, many technology companies have been interested in the family robot market. Sony and LG are the most active companies when they have the first products. At CES 2018, LG unveiled the Cloi robot while Sony unveiled a new version of the Aibo robot dog.
Advancements in machine vision, camera, artificial intelligence and voice commands will pave the way for Amazon to unleash its robot on the market. With the subsidy policy for prime subscribers, it is likely that Amazon’s robots will be sold cheaper than rivals.
According to Research and Markets, the consumer robot market will reach $ 15 billion by 2023, more than three times the $ 5.4 billion this year