ConnectR the visual visiting robot is available in 2008 from iRobot coorporation which made Roomba, a vacuum cleaning robot.
With ConnectR, Computer and Internet technology we can easily keep in touch with our love ones regardless how far appart we are. I think this is a nice gadget to have especially when work requires a lot of travel days so parents can keep in touch with their kids. Even if parents always there with their kids, this still can be usefull to use for grandkids and their grandparents or even with other far to reach relatives. Each will cost about $500.00
Here’s all the features & info on how ConnectR works, from iRobot.com:
Affordable and easy to use, ConnectR enables real-time virtual visits over the Internet. Equipped with high-quality audio and a video camera, the robot is located on-site in the home of the “host” party. Using a computer keyboard, mouse or joystick, the remote (“visiting”) party can drive the robot around and interact with those on-site, virtually participating in activities at home or wherever the device is located (for example, in the home of your grandchildren). The on-site host party can also direct the robot’s movements with a remote control.
Audio and Video
ConnectR features high quality two-way audio and a video camera to connect both parties over the Internet. The camera system provides both wide-angle and close-up viewing. The zoom level is 16.7x from the widest view to the narrowest. In addition, the camera features 220 degrees of tilt, enabling complete control of the viewing angles.
ConnectR comes complete with everying you need to set it up and get going including the robot, rechargeable battery, self-charging Home Base, remote control, headset microphone, and joystick. ConnectR is quick to install and easy to operate. You need a wireless broadband connection in your home and a Windows XP operating system on your PC. You simply charge the robot and follow the user-friendly set-up instructions to connect it to the wireless network in the home. Then you download the ConnectR software program onto any broadband-enabled PC, which enables you to contact ConnectR and use the robot to virtually visit the home.
Easy to operate
The user-friendly interface lets you connect to and control the robot from any Windows XP-enabled PC. Using a computer keyboard, mouse or joystick, you can drive ConnectR around in any direction to see, hear and interact with whomever you want. The people at home can also use the included remote control to “call” out and connect to you while you are away so that you are always in the loop.
If the on-site party doesn’t want to be disturbed, the robot’s privacy mode lets them turn off the audio, camera or both.
Safety on the net
Encrypted password protection keeps access to the robot private and secure.
Reach out to many, but you’re in the driver’s seat
You can give up to 10 family members or friends PIN codes to provide them with one-at-a-time access to your ConnectR. So, for example, you could give access to yourself at work, your spouse, each set of grandparents, a far-away sibling, best friend and still have room for more.