Sphero spin-off Misty Robotics has unveiled its second-generation robot. Fittingly dubbed the Misty II (the original Misty I debuted at CES earlier this year), the new personal robot is purpose built as a development platform. What exactly does that mean, you ask?
As CEO Tim Enwall explains to VentureBeat, Misty’s goal is to put a robot in every home and every office. To achieve that goal, Enwall believes they must first put Misty in the hands of developers to create apps and use cases for the robot. The strategy is similar to how personal computers infiltrated the consumer market decades ago.
“They didn’t just launch computers, and there were 50 applications. It took years for developers to build VisiCal, and games, and then [personal computers] took off [for the average consumer],” Bernstein told VentureBeat.
Misty II measures 14 inches tall and tips the scales at six pounds. It shares roughly 95 percent of the same hardware and software as the Misty I but has an extra microphone to accommodate developers’ desire for additional voice control capabilities.
Much of the robot’s success will depend on whether or not developers can come up with clever apps and meaningful use cases for the device.
The Misty II personal robot is being offered via a crowdfunding campaign at a 50 percent discount. Still, it’ll set you back a minimum of $1,499 – not exactly affordable, but then again, this iteration isn’t really a consumer-minded product. 250 units are being offered at this price and once those are gone, you’ll have to pony up $1,599 for the next batch of 1,175 and then $2,499 for the remaining 75 units (a total of 1,500 robots are on offer).
Look for Misty II to ship out just in time for the holidays on December 4.