Sun. Jan 29th, 2023
Amazon’s acquisition of Roomba will make it possible to get detailed layout plans and power ALL smart devices

Amazon will soon be able to map their users’ entire homes as it works to create a fully functional smart home.

As part of the tech giant’s acquisition of iRobot, maker of Roomba vacuum cleaners, worth $1.7 billion, Amazon will gain control of its new Robot operating system, giving the company access to detailed maps of the homes. of people, which can be used to collect even more data. about each user.

The operating system already works in tandem with a front-facing camera on Roomba j7 vacuums to map out the layout of a home and avoid over 80 everyday items such as shoes, socks, cords, headphones, clothing, and even pet scraps.

As a result of this card technology, CEO Colin Angle explained in May, it can understand detailed commands such as “clean for the counter” or “clean around the coffee table.”

And by installing this operating system on other Amazon smart home products such as Ring or the Eero router, Amazon can achieve its goals of creating a fully functional smart home while limiting which products from companies can connect to the home. .

This means the company has access to this data about people’s homes — and anyone who uses one of iRobot’s devices will provide that information to Amazon.

Amazon will now control iRobot’s new Robot OS operating system under the company’s $1.7 billion acquisition

The acquisition gives the tech giant access to detailed maps of a person’s homes, which can be used to collect even more data about each user. Pictured, an example of a clean map report

Speak with The edge in May, Angle said the AI-powered operating system Roombas and other devices would provide a “cloud-based home concept.”

He explained that under the system, an air purifier from Aeris — a company that iRobot bought last year — would recognize people in the kitchen and then turn on in the living room, where the noise wouldn’t disturb anyone.

“The idea is an operating system that is not just about activating the robot’s functions, but doing it in harmony with what’s happening in the house,” Angle said at the time.

In May, iRobot CEO Colin Angle announced that the company was rolling out a new operating system that would allow the vacuum cleaners to communicate with other smart devices.

He noted that iRobot’s vacuum cleaners already respond to 600 Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri voice commands and can understand voice commands to clean specific rooms.

But with the new AI-powered operating system, he said, “We can know where things are, so that if you screw in a light bulb, you turn on an air purifier, you plug in a toaster, install a speaker, the location of those devices can be immediately understood.”

“The scope of what we’re doing with iRobot OS is at this higher level of understanding,” Angle continued, explaining: “The barrier to the next level of AI in robotics isn’t better AI, it’s context.

“We’ve been able to understand the phrase ‘Go to the kitchen and get me a beer’ for ten years,” he said. “But if I don’t know where the kitchen is, and I don’t know what a beer looks like, it doesn’t really matter if I understand your words.

‘Only through understanding can the core promise of robotics – reaching out and performing physical tasks in the home – actually become manifest.’

The technology could be a boom for Amazon, which has managed to lead the smart home industry in recent years by simply connecting products with Amazon Alexa.

And the operating system could allow the company’s planned Astro roaming home security robot to interact with other devices as it moves around the house.

Angle is expected to stay with the company while Amazon takes over.

Amazon executives announced the acquisition last week, the fourth-largest to date

Announcing the deal, Dave Limp, senior vice president of Amazon Devices, said, “I’m excited to be working with the iRobot team to create ways that make customers’ lives easier and more enjoyable.”

Dave Limp, senior vice president of Amazon Devices, announced the acquisition last week: “Over many years, the iRobot team has proven its ability to reinvent how people clean with products that are incredibly practical and inventive – from cleaning where and when customers while avoiding common obstacles in the house, to automatic emptying of the bin.

“Customers love iRobot products — and I’m excited to work with the iRobot team to find ways to make customers’ lives easier and more enjoyable.”

iRobot was founded in 1990 and the company is best known for its automated cleaning device, Roomba. Last year it made $1.56 billion in revenue.

This is Amazon’s fourth largest deal to date, with its 2017 acquisition of Whole Foods Market still at the top after costing $13.7 billion.

Behind this was Amazon’s purchase of movie studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer for $8.45 billion and healthcare provider One Medical for $3.9 billion.

Amazon’s four acquisitions this year are Strio.AI, GlowRoad, primary health clinics One Medical, and iRobot.

In 2021, the company acquired five others – Umbra 3D, TV and film company Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Art19, Wickr and Veeqo.

Shares of the tech giant fell more than 1 percent on Tuesday and are now 17.7 percent lower than in the past year

But news of Amazon’s acquisition of iRobot came just a week after the company announced a huge loss for the second straight quarter.

Revenue at the company was $121 billion in the quarter, but it posted a $2 billion loss as it continued to work to contain costs.

Many of those losses were related to expansion during the sales bonanza it experienced at the start of COVID. However, the loss was less than in the first quarter of this year, when the company announced a loss of $3.8 billion. That loss was the first since 2015, and was also impacted by a large write-off on their electric vehicle company, Rivian.

Shares of Amazon were still up 12 percent in after-hours trading, but fell again more than 1 percent on Tuesday and is now 17.7 percent lower than last year.


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