You can get a (proper) robot dog of your very own – if you can afford one


It’s a little strange to say but we’ve watched this little robot dog grow up. Spot, Boston Dynamics’ creepy faceless canine, has come a long way. From its origins as a tethered robot to something altogether scarier, we’ve seen Spot go autonomous and even herd sheep.

And now you can have one, if you have the cash. And fulfil a few other conditions but it’s mostly about the money. Boston Dynamics has put Spot the wonder dog on sale, for the princely sum of $75,000. Best of all, you only need a deposit of $1,000 to secure one. We doubt the eight week wait for delivery will be enough time to raise the rest of the cash, however.

Go fetch

Spot joins its smaller sibling on the open market — though this is the robotic pal you purchase if you’re serious about stepping into the future. The point? Well, “Spot Explorer is designed for developers eager to explore how flexible mobile robots can be adapted for tasks ranging from industrial inspection to entertainment.”

The modular robot can be fitted with a range of sensors, making it ideal for actual security patrols, as well as tedious and repetitive work that has to be done the same way each time. We dare say a few enterprising souls might even work out a few new ways to make use of this critter.

There is a catch, though. In order to purchase a Spot, you need to be a business and you need to be based in the US — which makes a kind of sense. It’s actually not rated for use around the home and the ominous-sounding disclaimer (Spot is not certified safe for in-home use or intended for use near children or others who may not appreciate the hazards associated with its operation) makes us think that’s for a reason. Plus, keeping your high-tech robot dog running won’t be simple if you need to ship it halfway around the world every time it hiccups. The other catch? That price, of course. $75,000 (R1.3mil) isn’t a small amount of money for a household pet — though it’s doable if you’re putting said pet to hard, repetitive work.


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