Which stands for Mobile Eccentric Droid. This is a little four-wheeled assistant that’ll do… well, all sorts of interesting things. But mostly it’ll follow you like the world’s most obedient dog, possibly carrying the world’s most disobedient dog to the vet. And MobED is coming to CES in Vegas next year.
It’s a MobED scene
But since nobody ever likes to wait — and because Hyundai will take all the hype they can get — the company has detailed what it’ll be showing off a little early. ModED is part of the company’s mobility platform, with an interesting set of skills.
Its wheels in particular are noteworthy. They’re able to reorient themselves to keep a load stable, navigate a particularly tight turn, or even rotate on the spot without compromising what’s being carried. It’s only a matter of time before someone turns one into the best remote control Batmobile from Batman: Arkham Knight ever.
Mostly, though, it’ll use its adjustable wheelbase to optimise stability at any speed. It’ll cruise at up to 30km/h, which might be a bit speedy for an at-home ‘bot, and it’ll also operate for up to four hours on a charge. The platform weighs 50kg, so we wouldn’t recommend trying to ride one to work.
And not because we don’t know what the maximum payload is. MobED has potential applications as “a mobility device for the elderly or the disabled,” or as “a stroller or leisure vehicle, ” according to Hyundai. But if it runs out of charge on the way to the office, you’ll need to tote more than 50kg to a charger.
What the company hasn’t revealed is how the MobED is navigated. The preview video shows it following a human but doesn’t give any hints as to how this is achieved. There’s no mention of whether the platform is piloted or if sensors permit autonomous travel. Hyundai, through Boston Dynamics, has access to all of these options. It’s just a question of what they’ll used for their mobility platform when it launches.