Anki, a San Francisco-based robotics company, released an adorable little robot in late 2018 called Vector, who can hang out with you, be a helpful assistant, and do a few tricks. This tiny home robot is half toy half assistant with built-in Alexa.
Vector is currently available on Amazon for 20% off. Get this Alexa-compatible toy robot for $199 instead of its normal retail price of $250.
Vector is a home toy robot, like Rosie from The Jetsons, though not as advanced (for now). He resembles Wall-E quite a lot, but cleaner and shinier. He is mostly black with gray details and a few gold accents and can move around autonomously using his miniature caterpillar tracks. His “head” is a high-resolution IPS display that shows his expressive animated eyes.
For the initial setup, Vector needs to be hooked up to his app, which is available for both iOS and Android devices. Set-up is pretty straightforward, and in order to work with Alexa, you need to link your Amazon account.
Through the app, you will be able to choose the Vector’s eye color, the volume of his voice, and other display options like time, weather, temperature, etc. After that, he basically has a mind of his own. Powered with artificial intelligence and a Qualcomm 200 processor, he reacts to you, wanders off on his own, goes back to his charger if he’s about to lose power, and even falls asleep when you’re not interacting with him. He’s playful and child-like and talks, chirps, squeaks, and blips.
Vector is equipped with an ultra-wide HD camera, a built-in microphone array, a touch sensor, and an Infrared laser scanner that lets him listen and respond to you and maneuver his way through your house while avoiding obstacles. You can ask him what the weather is, take your photos, dance to music, and play blackjack.
Since he works with Alexa, you can ask the toy robot questions, add items to your shopping list, set reminders, control smart home devices like lights, speakers and thermostats, and more.
Despite all the incredible things that Vector is capable of, he’s not perfect. Many Amazon users warned that he should not be placed on high desks as he tends to fall. His voice also sounds very robotic, which can be hard to understand, unlike Alexa and Siri. And at the end of the day, Vector is still a toy, so don’t expect him to be that advanced. He can’t play music nor make phone calls.
But all things considered, Vector is probably the best robot toy available in the market, with a tangible personality that’s hard not to love.
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