Amazon Astro, by Invitation Only

Amazon is rolling out its highly-anticipated home robot, named Astro, by invitation only. It;’s just under $1,000 for early adopters and will go up to just under $1,500 after the special price expires. This is the upper end of Roomba pricing.

Astro incorporates Alexa, but Amazon insists that it is not “just Alexa with wheels.” Astro will navigate your home, thanks to AI, and will hang out near you when you’re not using it. You can send it to specific locations remotely to check and see whether you remembered to turn off the oven — it has a periscope camera that allows it to look at things located over its head — and it will come find you to give you messages and alerts.

It even has a built in cupholder, though it has no arms and therefore cannot be expected to make coffee for you.

Planned integrations

Astro connects with Ring, allowing it to act like a CCTV camera. It will “proactively patrol, investigate activity, save videos in Ring’s cloud storage for up to 60 days, and more.” It alerts you if someone it doesn’t recognize comes to your house, or if it hears a worrying noise.

Alexa Guard alerts you to the sounds of breaking glass or footsteps. With Alexa Plus, Astro even plays dog bark sounds to scare off intruders.

Coming soon is Alexa Together, which will allow you to monitor elderly relatives. With Alexa Together, Astro can alert you if a loved one falls, give you a heads-up if they fail to use any devices by a set time, or call for help. With your loved one’s permission, you can set reminders for them, manage their shopping lists, and get alerts when they use communication features.

Astro recharges itself when necessary. It won’t go up or down stairs, but it also won’t fall down the stairs, so that’s something. It can carry a Ziploc container and, with added accessories, throw treats to your dog.

Amazon told the BBC that they expect to see home robots in every home in American within the next decade, and they expect Astro to be the leader of that pack. We expect more integrations between now and then.


In the meantime, if you need service or support for your Indramat Motion Control system, we are the Indramat specialists. Contact us for immediate assistance.