Meet Amazon Astro, Amazon's Multifaceted Home Robot
by Tech Mainstream
October 1, 2021
Amazon Astro Image/Amazon
(Tech Mainstream) Amazon Astro was recently introduced at the Amazon's Devices & Services September 28 Event. Astro is a robot to help you monitor and manage your home:
"Keep home closer with Astro, the household robot for home monitoring, with Alexa. When you're away, use the Astro app to see a live view of your home, check in on specific rooms and viewpoints, and get activity alerts. When you're home, Astro can follow you from room to room playing your favorite music, podcasts or shows, and find you to deliver calls, reminders, alarms, and timers set with Alexa."
Astro uses Intelligent Motion allowing it to freely navigate home using advanced learning algorithms and sensor fusion. Astro effortlessly avoids objects and keeps its distance from people, pets, and stairs, follows you around or delivers messages and hangs out in low-traffic areas and charges its battery when necessary.
When away from your home, using the Astro app, Astro can effectively wander your house and pinpoint certain issues of concern such as unknown persons in the home, glass breaking, smoke and CO alarm sounds, etc. You can see a live view inside your home and check in on rooms, people, or things.
Astro, along with a 6-month free trial Ring Protect Pro, becomes an even more powerful home sentinel patroling while you're away, proactively investigating detected events, and automatically saving video clips in Ring's cloud storage. You can also save and share video clips and review up to 60 days of video history
Astro helps take care of older persons to live independently with Alexa Together:
"Alexa Together is a new way to remotely care for your aging loved ones, giving you peace of mind while helping them live independently. Using the Alexa Together subscription, you can receive activity alerts, and manage shopping lists or set up reminders on behalf of your loved one that Astro can deliver. Astro can also deliver items in the cargo bin, like water bottles or vitamins. If there is an emergency, your loved one can say 'Astro, call for help' to connect to our 24/7 Professional Urgent Response team."
With the idea of a robot roaming around your house collecting data, privacy issues are sure to arise. To help ameliorate privacy problems, Amazon maintains Astro is designed with multiple layers of privacy controls: Turn off mics, cameras, and motion with one press of a button, define out of bounds zones to let Astro know where it cannot go, create a visual ID for Astro to recognize your face using on-device processing.
Astro can accomodate compatible accessories that fit conveniently in its cargo bin such as Furbo Dog Camera, Ziploc storage container and OMRON wrist blood pressure monitor.
Just remember Astro cannot go up or down stairs.