Segway's hoverboard leads a double life as your personal robotic assistantBy Shawn Knight
Dropping a couple hundred bucks on one of those trendy "hoverboards" may be tough for some to stomach, especially considering they'll wind up in the bottom of your kid's closet once the fad wears off. When that inevitable day comes, you'll be able to repurpose the two-wheeled scooter... that is, if you purchased Segway's new hoverboard.
Unveiled during Intel's keynote at CES, the device in question comes from Segway and Xiaomi-backed company Ninebot (it's powered by an Intel Atom processor and uses its RealSense ZR300 camera, hence its appearance during Intel's keynote). FYI, Ninebot acquired Segway last April for an undisclosed sum.
Once its head and arms are attached, the robot can pull off a number of functions. As The Guardian explains, it's able to sense its surroundings, recognize and avoid obstacles like furniture and interact with people. During an on-stage demo, the robot answered the front door and led the guest back into the living room.
It's not just for the home, either. With a top speed of more than 11 mph and a range of over 18 miles, the robot can follow its owner around town, carry shopping bags, snap photos and more. And because it is an open platform, developers will be able to create all sorts of uses for it (assuming of course that the device finds a following among consumers).
A developer kit is expected to arrive sometime in the second half of 2016.