If you’re allergic to dogs but have always wanted a canine companion, Boston Dynamics has an interesting- albeit expensive – solution for you. Following a limited release to select businesses and research facilities, the renowned robotics company has begun selling Spot, its robot dog, to any consumer who’s willing to shell out $74,500 for it.
Apparently, Spot is sophisticated enough to autonomously traverse all types of terrain, ranging from rocky surfaces to common household steps, which means that there’s no telling what kind of horrific shenanigans it may get into while owners are asleep. But jokes aside, the mechanical canine has already helped plenty of enterprises, such as NASA, achieve their goals. Here’s a few, as outlined in a press release:
- Saving approximately 20 hours of work per week by automating the capture of nearly 5,000 images weekly on Quebec-based construction firm Pomerleau’s 500,000 square foot building project.
- Increasing data-collection efficiency and safety in Hensel Phelps’ construction of Denver International Airport’s main terminal, and automating the capture of laser scans and 360-degree images to reduce the risk of return visits and project delays.
- Leveraging computer-vision-based anomaly detection software to reduce human risk in potentially dangerous tasks for AkerBP’s energy production facilities.
- Autonomously navigating tough, underground terrain with NASA Jet Propulsion Lab Team CoSTAR’s integrated autonomy, perception and communication tools, an application which ultimately won the most recent DARPA Subterranean Challenge Competition, the Urban Circuit.
“At Boston Dynamics, we have spent decades creating and refining robots with advanced mobility, dexterity and intelligence because we believe agile robots can solve a broad range of real world problems,” said Marc Raibert, chairman and founder of Boston Dynamics. “The combination of Spot’s sophisticated software and high performance mechanical design enables the robot to augment difficult or dangerous human work. Now you can use Spot to increase human safety in environments and tasks where traditional automation hasn’t been successful.”
Boston Dynamics’s Spot can be purchased here with a $1,000 (fully refundable) deposit, although shipping won’t begin for six to eight weeks.