Who said Segways can’t surprise us anymore? The company that used to make electric scooters for mall security is back with a Transformer. Ok, it’s not a cool, intelligent robot/car like in the movie, but a neat hoverboard* that turns into a robot #objectmagic
For this one, called generically Segway Robot, the company gave up its usual handlebar, letting people wander around more freely. Even so, you’ll see a pole attached to the base; once you put the vehicle to rest, it will transform in a peculiar robot:
The bot has two round, blinking eyes, and speaks in a predictable, monotone voice. It’s enabled with voice recognition so it can help you as an assistant throughout the house. As proven in the video below, the robot can answer the door in your place and make guests feel comfortable until you arrive:
The Internet-connected camera/face helps it recognize and avoid obstacles around the room so it can follow you around, in robotic stalker fashion.
Segway partnered up with Intel and Xiaomi to make the bot happen and it let us believe it’s going to be the first of several products the trio has in mind. As for Segway Bot, you’ll probably find it of more use if you attach Lego-like arms to it… that come separately.
*It happens to the best of us; we start using a term often enough that we forget its true meaning. The term hoverboard, for example; many people associate it with this . But originally, the term referred to a fictional levitating board used for personal transportation, seen in film series Back to the Future. It took the input of our great fans, Zach Cooper, Sam Aitken and Andrew Sutton, to take a step back and remember all of this. Thanks, guys!