Amazon’s Dave Limp, who runs the hardware division of an electronics retailer, said the company’s foray into home robots this week began with a focus on security and has since evolved into a product that can also deliver drinks. and can make video calls. told.
“We wrote a document that we felt our customers were particularly interested in the safety aspects of home robots,” Limp told CNBC’s John Forte in an interview aired Friday on “TechCheck.” “Since then, it has evolved to cover a lot more surface area, but that was kind of the original idea.”
Over the years, Amazon has created a range of hardware devices, from the early Kindle e-readers to the latest tablets, voice-activated smart speakers, and smart TVs. But the latest device, an Alexa-powered robot called Astro, may be the most ambitious yet.
Amazon unveiled Astro at its annual hardware event on Tuesday. The company began experimenting with robots in its warehouse and eventually developed consumer products. According to Limp, Amazon has spent the last four years developing devices.
The Astro is loaded with sensors that allow you to move things in and around the house with ease. It includes two Qualcomm chips that enhance features such as Visual ID so that one user can be identified by another. Astro can patrol your home autonomously, responding to commands and providing reminders.
Amazon usually targets those thrifty with the low-priced Echo speaker and TV streaming stick, but Astro costs $1,000 for users who receive an early access invite and $1,000 for users who purchase at launch. 1,500 are. Growth.
“We still know that some of our largest volumes are around $50,” Limp says. “That said, some of these brands have been around for a while, and when they do, customers ask us to add features.”
Limp said recent upgrades to smart home technologies like sensors and processors have allowed Amazon to consider launching robots with Alexa.
“That kind of combination got us excited, well, we should start it,” he said.
Amazon still expects to fuel e-commerce, cloud computing, and most of its revenue for now, and that won’t affect device sales. The company typically sees the devices as a way to take advantage of other services like Prime shipping and streaming music and video to consumers.
Look: Amazon introduced Robot, Astro