Robotics company Anki announced that it’s shutting down, and close to 200 employees would be paid a week of severance. The company said it was left without “significant funding” to support its goals.
“Despite our past successes, we pursued every financial avenue to fund our future product development and expand on our platforms,” a company spokesperson said. “A significant financial deal at a late stage fell through with a strategic investor and we were not able to reach an agreement. We’re doing our best to take care of every single employee and their families, and our management team continues to explore all options available.”
Sad to see. I remember first seeing Anki announced at Apple’s keynote back in 2013.
Anki has a promotion video out for Vector, the company’s new personal robot. And the good news is that Vector won’t destroy humanity. Though, to be fair, what else would a robot say, unless, of course, it had been programmed not to lie…OK, I’m off track. This is a funny and well made spot. I supported Vector on Kickstarter and am waiting for delivery now (by October 9th!). This pet robot looks fun, and Anki is doing some really cool stuff. Now that the Kickstarter is over, Vector is available for preorder for $212.49. That’s a little more than Kickstarter, but still less than the planned retail price of $249.99. Check it out, and enjoy the promo video.
Adam Christianson from the Maccast and Andrew Orr join Jeff Gamet to share their thoughts on whether or not Apple is doing enough to protect our privacy, plus they have some first impressions on Anki’s new Vector robot.
Anki’s Cozmo is a fun fist-size robot for education and play, and now the company is taking its compact robots to the next level with Vector. Unlike Cozmo, Vector doesn’t need your smartphone to supplement its brain, and it uses artificial intelligence to learn. It’s also designed to be more of an assistant and can learn names and faces, as well as link to the internet to find answers to your questions. The idea is to make Vector your companion instead of just a robot toy. There’s a Kickstarter so you can get a Vector for US$199.99 on October 9th, and it’ll be available to the general public for $249.99 on October 12th.
Anki OVERDRIVE: Fast & Furious Edition launches with new cars and special track pieces to make your iPhone car racing more exciting.