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How Mobile Robots Fit into Collaboration Sales: 'Not the Future, But Part of the Future'

May 30, 2014 | Telepresence Options


Story and images by Kelly Teal / Channel Partners

In much the same way as NASA's Curiosity Mars Rover enabled Internet users to explore the Red Planet 140 million miles away, iRobot's Ava 500 self-navigating telepresence robot is enabling enterprise workers to negotiate geographic distances and precarious situations.

Telepresence robots go video conferencing one better, enabling eyes into specific locations where it's not practical or prudent for people to venture in person.

Such devices, in varying forms of sophistication, have been on the market for about four years, but gained high-profile attention in March when iRobot, one of the biggest names in robotics, unveiled the Ava 500. Billed as the first self-navigating robot, Ava 500 features a 21.5-inch LCD for a head. iRobot built Ava 500 with the help of Cisco, for its telepresence technology. Ava 500 is available through select Cisco resellers.

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