15 robots you’ll want to bring home in 2021.
Tuesday, January 5, 2021
You'll want to keep an eye on these 15 robots in 2021 that will make your home cleaner, healthier and better for families.
Robots “maid” for you
In a recent poll, more than 70 percent of people said their homes would be cleaner if they had robots to do their chores. Luckily, we already have access to robots that will help with some of those dirty jobs. Here are a few of our favorites.
Devices that sterilize your home were in high demand in 2020 for all the obvious reasons. ROCKUBOT stepped in with a robot it claims kills 99.9 percent of bacteria, germs and mites. Perhaps its most common use is cleaning the bed – on and under the sheets, pillows, mattresses. But it also has a handheld mode to help sanitize electronics. Unexpectedly, this cleaning robot comes with a Bluetooth speaker so it can stream your favorite music while doing its thing.
Vacuuming can be a never-ending task, especially if you have pets. Robotic vacuums have been making the chore easier for several years now. For those ready to take it to the next level, you’ll see more mopping robots to help tackle more floor – and dirt – types. You’ll definitely want one for those hard-to-reach spaces like around toilets.
This robot will do the dirty work whether you have expanses of windows or very tall ones like those that span multiple stories in an entryway. No more hauling in a ladder and perching on it perilously or paying someone to clean your windows for you. Suction keeps it attached to the window, while AI helps determine where the windows’ edges are and makes sure all of the glass gets a good scrubbing. Don’t forget to try it on stubborn glass shower doors, too.
We cooked at home a lot in the last year. We’ve also spent a lot more time outdoors. Often, we did both at the same time. That’s why the Grillbot comes in so handy. This automatic grill cleaning robot scrubs and scrapes with its wire brushes so you don’t have to.
Using much the same technology as robotic vacuums, this robotic lawnmower trims your grass while you stay cool inside or focus on other activities like playing with the kids. The Worx Landroid also has rain sensors that will send it back to the docking station when the weather turns, as well as security features like a pin number to start operation and alerts if it strays from your yard.
Smart robots for smarter kids
When remote learning became widespread during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic, schools and families had to get creative quickly. One of the biggest challenges was finding engaging ways to connect with children and keep their minds growing. These robots are helping us do that not only today, but likely well into the future.
LEGO sees learning through play as a vital part of building kids’ social-emotional needs, increasingly important as we navigate the challenges of classroom, virtual and hybrid learning in 2021. If your kids have already made The Child, they might love taking it a step farther with LEGO Education SPIKE Prime and other make-your-own robots that teach coding, problem solving and creative design. They’ll think they’re playing, but you’ll know they’re learning essential skills in science, technology and innovation.
This adorable little robot can hear, speak and relate to your child using a variety of speakers, algorithms and cues from your child. Miko 2 is also programmed to help them learn, providing knowledge and skills that are right for their age and that you can control. As more research finds that robots can get kids excited about reading, devices like this one will become increasingly popular.
You might not actually see this robot in your own home, but your child could have experience with it through e-learning. Owl and other similar telepresence robots are giving teachers the ability to better re-create a classroom experience even when their students are remote. Owl can swivel and move to follow a teacher around a room, making it a smarter video conference camera.
Rarely do we see the combination of music education with STEM training. Wigl was created to inspire kids at a young age to get into robotics and engineering. The little bug-looking robot dances based on the musical notes it hears. Your kids will learn the connection between their actions and the robot’s when they can make it “wigl” as they play a song or sing to it.
Artificial intelligence, true companionship
Yes, many people have a fear of robots. While they’re always trying to take over the world in movies, robots can actually bring us all closer together in real life. We already ask Alexa to tell us jokes. We say, “Hey Google, text Mom.” Experts expect 29 percent growth in the market for “social robots” annually over the next few years, so it’s not a far leap to think that some of these companionable robots will soon take up residence in our homes.
Everyone tries to create a robot dog, but aibo seems like one that offers the most fun. With artificial intelligence, he can learn his environment and your habits to fit in with your home and family. You can feed him with the app – shake your phone to bring him running at the sound of treats – send him on “Puppy Patrol” to find someone on your People of Interest registry and have him do tricks. As Sony, the maker of aibo, says, his “happiness is spending quality time with you.”
More popular today in Japan, BOCCO is a communication robot that helps send text and voice messages, even if someone is too young for, or otherwise unable to use, a smartphone. Kids can talk to the robot, which will then send you a text with their message, or you can send a message from your phone for BOCCO to deliver to the kids. It’s continuously being developed, so compatibility with other devices in the Internet of Things is on the rise, making it a robot to keep an eye on. Also, he’s super cute.
Falls are a concern for many, but this robot can help remove some of the worries. Walabot HOME uses radio frequency to tell if someone in the room has fallen. Then, even if they’re unconscious, the device will contact a caregiver. It works anywhere in the home but is especially popular in bathrooms both because falls so often happen in that space and because Walabot HOME does not use cameras. There are also no wearables or buttons that need to be pressed to send an alert.
Robots on the rise … we hope
Maybe they aren’t real yet and maybe no one knows what exactly they’re capable of, but it’s fun to dream about how some of these space-age robots could improve our daily lives.
The assistive robot is still in the research and development stages, but if it becomes more viable, not to mention affordable, the benefits are priceless. The goal is to give individuals with disabilities more independence. In trial studies, it has worked with those who are paralyzed to help them complete tasks as common as scratching an itch. If this robot succeeds in assisting in other ways – eating, dressing, cleaning – countless people will be able to live more “normal” lives.
Described as a “coffee-serving humanoid machine,” this robot uses 5G connectivity. It’s still under development, but that 5G is what CloudMinds, the company that makes XR-1, says is going to make it revolutionary. Because of the faster connection, the robot will be able to respond to our commands with almost no lag time. Eventually, it could help with household chores and more.
This robotic dog is a spinoff of Boston Dynamics’ original Spot. While Spot is better suited for construction and public safety uses, they anticipate SpotMini to be of greater use in homes. It already has figured out how to help with dishes and open doors. What sets SpotMini apart from other household chore robots is that it operates on four legs rather than wheels. That opens possibilities for assisting on uneven ground and stairways.