(UnitedVoice.com) – Amazon has just demonstrated its latest gadget – a robot that can learn your habits, integrate with smart home technology and help keep your home secure. But is it a step too far for consumers?
At a September 28 press conference, Jeff Bezos’s giant tech company showed off a range of new devices, but the star of the show was Astro. Astro is a robot about the size of a small dog that’s packed with smart technology. It has built-in Alexa functions, so it can answer questions, control your smart devices and ask if you want to buy things on Amazon. It even has a handy cup holder so you can balance a coffee on top of your new $999 robot. But it’s also a powerful surveillance system.
Don’t be fooled — Amazon’s Astro isn’t a home robot, it’s a camera on wheels https://t.co/tZYN82ce54
— Typewriter News (@typewriternews) October 1, 2021
Amazon says Astro can be used to check on pets, kids or elderly relatives while you’re out through remote access to its onboard cameras and microphones. Of course, those cameras and microphones can also report the presence of an intruder – or record everything you say and do.
Amazon has gone out of its way to make Astro look cute. The screen it uses for a face usually shows a pair of minimalist, but somehow soulful, eyes and it makes cute noises. But it’s still a mobile, internet-connected surveillance camera that can follow you around.
The question is, will consumers see it as a cute helpful puppy or more Big Brother?
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