We’ve come a long way since the Roomba hit shelves in 2002, when we had the first inkling that personal robots could become attainable for the average household. One of these personal robots may just be the best gifts you could give yourself for the holidays this year.
The New-and-Improved Robot Vacuum
We’d be remiss in not starting with the Roomba and seeing how far it’s come in 15 years on the market. IRobot’s newest model can be controlled via wifi on your phone, or linked up with your Amazon Alexa or Google voice-activated home assistant. While the Roomba makes it way around your home to clean, it can identify spots where it’s especially dirty and remembers it. The robot can plug itself into its charging station, and then resume cleaning when the battery is full.
The Robot with a Sassy Personality
Standing at 9.5 inches tall, this robot is equipped with emotional intelligence that allows it to develop a personality — you can program it to have one of three types. You interact with Cue the CleverBot through text messages, and it can respond with jokes, wit, and even memes. It’s likely that having an AI that’s designed to have human characteristics, like brave or geeky or charming, is going to be slightly jarring.
Robot That Will Cleans Your Windows
Luckily there are other robots out there besides the Roomba that will do your tedious household cleaning. The robot works like a vacuum cleaner, but it has microfiber pads to clean glass and suction-like features to ensure it doesn’t fall off while hanging vertically on your window. This honestly seems like a huge time-saver for huge windows that you need a ladder to clean fully.
The Hands-Free Scooter That’s Safer Than a Hoverboard
The miniPRO prides itself on having the balancing capabilities of a hoverboard, but safety levels more in line with an electric scooter. It’s completely hands-free: riders press their knees on the middle bar to control it, precision sensors help to balance it out, and it can even be controlled via smartphone. The smartphone app also has an anti-theft feature.
Instead of paying a neighborhood kid to do a sub-par job, this robotic lawnmower can get the job done. Worx’s Landroid is designed to trim your lawn on a daily basis, as opposed to traditional lawnmowers that tackle long grass every one in a while. The robotic lawnmower is also not as loud as a traditional one, and it can even return itself to its charging station when it’s low on battery or it’s raining.
The Robot That Can be There When You’re Not
Well this is definitely the closest we’ve come so far to being replaced by robots. While FaceTime and Skype make it easy to have face-to-face chats when you’re not in the same room, the Beam System takes it one step further. The Beam navigates and moves on its own with a physical body attached to the video screen. Bosses can check in on employees when they’re not in the office, parents can watch their kids do homework while at work, faraway friends can hang out easier. Essentially, this thing will replace the need to leave your house ever again.
Your Own Stormtrooper that Follows Your Orders
If action figures and plush toys aren’t enough for Star Wars fans out there, you can buy your very own Stormtrooper prepared for battle. Your Stormtrooper can be controlled with voice commands, patrol your home without walking into walls, and recognize faces you’ve deemed to be allies or foes. See how much damage this 11-inch tall fighter can do.
The Robot That Makes Amazon Alexa Come Alive
Lynx has the ever-evolving capabilities of the Amazon Alexa, meaning this robot can give you weather forecasts, play your music, and make to-do lists. If you really want, Lynx can also teach you yoga and show you dance moves, that is if you really want to take advice on dancing from a robot. The robot also has security features: it records can capture a 30-second video if it detects movement when you’re not home, and send the footage to your smartphone app.
A Robotic Security Guard for Your Home
This robot has a solution for stationary alarm systems and home security cameras that don’t capture a complete view of your house. Connected to wifi, Riley travels around your home using a night vision camera and motion detectors to look for suspicious activity and can send alerts to your phone. The robot also has a built-in mic, which lets you listen in what’s going on at your house, or check in with whoever’s home.
Cozmo, Your Child’s Robot Sidekick
Now your kid will always have a friend, even if it is a tiny robot! Cozmo is also equipped with AI that gives it a unique personality, one that evolves and adapts the more it hangs out with its owner. Its eyes act as a video camera, so you can use your phone to see life from Cozmo’s perspective. Cozmo is also designed as an educational tool that can help kids learn to code or play mind-bending games.
Your Robotic Pool Boy
This relatively small robot includes various vacuuming and scrubbing elements that you don’t have to switch out — the Dolphin does it on its own. Special swivel cables prevent them from tangling, and GPS to ensure the entire pool is cleaned.
The Robot That Wants to Replace your Dog
While you may not be able to train your dog at home, you’ll probably have better luck training CHiP to do tricks, play fetch and sit. This robot can apparently show affection, nuzzle you with its nose, and be your new best friend. But let’s be real: CHiP may want to replace your dog, but what robot could ever be as pure and joyous as a real slobbering barking dog?!
Your Robotic Personal Assistant
No, don’t get up from the couch you’ve been sitting on for the past four hours! Instead of calling for your partner or texting your mom in the other room to get you something from the fridge, you can make MiP get it for you. You don’t even have to talk to it — it responds to your hand gestures and commands from a smartphone app. It runs of Bluetooth, so you don’t even need wifi. The robot can even carry things on its built-in tray.