Cisco Systems and iRobot have partnered to market the Ava 500 video collaboration robot. The Ava 500 robot uses iRobot’s autonomous navigation and Cisco’s telepresence software. The Ava 500 will likely become popular within enterprises. The goal of the Ava 500 is to “enable people working off-site to participate in meetings and presentations where movement and location spontaneity are important.”
The Ava 500 was designed for collaboration, mobility, and telepresence. It will be especially useful in manufacturing facilities, supply chain outputs, and labs. The Ava 500 would make it possible for executives to show up for meetings and remote corporate training functions. This is a different path for iRobot as they generally focus on manufacturing automated vacuum cleaners and military robots.
iRobot combined their robotics platform with Cisco’s TelePresence EX60 end point and Aironet 1600 Series wireless access points. There is a 21.5-inch HD resolution screen that is placed on top of the Ava 500 robot. The Ava 500 can be controlled with an iPad by selecting the destination. The iPad interface lets users select which employee and room to see. The screen can be made private or public.
Pricing for the Ava 500 is currently unknown.