- Though this is a press release/marketing material, I thought you might be
interested in this. It is a robot platform that Doug Kelley and I were
involved with. They were showing their stuff at the last robothon.
To their credit, these folks have been trying real hard to get a robotics
platform out that has a lot of functionality without costing many thousands
For Immediate Release
The Evolution Robotics™ ER1™ Robot Rolls Into Retail
>From Fry’s to FAO Schwarz, from J&R to Amazon, leading retailers are nowoffering
the world’s first personal robot system designed for the home and workplace
Check out The ER1 Demo Days at Select Retail Locations Nationwide
Pasadena, CA -– October 1, 2002 – The vision of a robot in every home came
one step closer to reality today as Evolution Robotics™ Inc. announced the
retail launch of the Evolution Robotics ER1™, a personal robot system
designed for the home and workplace. Consumer technology enthusiasts can
purchase the ER1 in time for the holiday season from a mix of popular
consumer electronic retail outlets including Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Fry’s
Electronics, select FAO Schwarz stores, J&R Computer World, TigerDirect,
Insight, as well as through Evolution Robotics web site, www.evolution.com.
Customers are invited to check out the ER1 at one of over 200 demonstration
days being hosted by stores across the country over the next two months.
Find the nearest demo days location at www.evolution.com.
Evolution Robotics carefully selected retail partners who share Evolution
Robotics vision as well as cater to a market of hobbyists and early adopters
who will ultimately help drive the use of personal robotics in everyday
life. “We look for consumer products that will have a lot of traction in
the marketplace. Particularly in the months leading up to the holiday
season, we need to put products on our shelves that will be big winners.
When we saw what ER1 could be trained to do we felt it was an important and
exciting item we wanted to showcase and sell to our customers,” commented
Carl Fiorentino, President, TigerDirect.com.
Available in two configurations, the Evolution Robotics ER1 can be purchased
unassembled for $599 MSRP, or assembled for $699 MSRP. Using the owner’s
Windows laptop, the ER1 allows users to create their own personal robots and
easily train them to perform a variety of tasks ranging from taking pictures
of the family and automatically emailing them to friends, playing music on
command, reading a bedtime story to the children, capturing video of the
home or children for security purposes, setting daily reminders for its
owner and, using additional accessories that will be available in the coming
months, holding, delivering and/or receiving packages and objects.
“Now that the ER1 is out in the retail market, we believe consumers are
going to be very impressed with a powerful yet affordable product that
brings robotics into their day-to-day lives,” commented Bill Gross, Founder
and Executive Chairman of Evolution Robotics. “With its remarkable
performance and capabilities, our personal robot will show consumers how it
can carry out tasks and ultimately become an indispensable tool for every
Following the introduction of the ER1 in May 2002, Evolution Robotics set up
a beta program with more than 50 developers and consumers to test early
versions of the ER1 personal robot system. "It took me much less time to
assemble the ER1 than any other robot I have purchased as a kit," said James
C. Deen, an ER1 beta customer. "With the ER1, as soon as I loaded up the
software on my laptop, plugged in the camera and Robot Control Module using
the fool-proof USB connections, I had it moving about and accurately
recognizing my fish tank, office door, several different magazine covers,
and even myself in about 30 minutes. The ER1 is sophisticated enough to
capture the devotion of any level of robotics hobbyist or student, yet
simple enough to pique the interest of the average consumer."
A technological breakthrough in the personal robot market, the ER1 is only
the first in a line of autonomous personal robot products that Evolution
Robotics will bring to market. Accessories for the ER1 will also be
released by the end of the year, including a gripper arm that can grab and
move objects. The gripper arm's design provides easy operation and useful
functionality and can be attached anywhere on the ER1 using flexible
attachment options. Other accessories include a second power module for
extended use, an infrared sensor pack to help the ER1 navigate around an
area using “object presence” and a robot expansion pack that contains
additional beams, connectors, and wheels to allow an owner to customize or
tailor make the ultimate ER1 robot or robot accessory.
Bernard Louvat, CEO of Evolution Robotics added “This is a big step in our
overall company vision. Once manufacturers see the power and potential of
our technology we hope they will work with us and license our technology
platform for their own new and existing products.”
Evolution Robotics has plans to begin shipping and selling the ER1
internationally in early 2003. The company will also be exhibiting at CES,
Las Vegas in January 2003, where it will be demonstrating its line of
personal robot products and software technologies. More information on
Evolution Robotics and the ER1 can be found at www.evolution.com.
About Evolution Robotics
Evolution Robotics™, www.evolution.com, provides and manufactures
technologies and personal robot products for the home and workplace,
targeting both businesses and consumers directly. Based in Pasadena,
California and founded in March 2001, Evolution Robotics has developed the
Evolution Robotics Software Platform™, a proprietary, open, modular,
portable, hardware-independent and scalable software architecture.
Following the company’s launch in February 2002, Evolution Robotics licenses
its robotics technologies, including the Evolution Robotics Software
Platform, to OEMs to help bring new personal robot products to market. The
company’s current consumer product, the ER1™, was introduced in May 2002 and
is the first-ever personal robot that can be trained to perform useful
functions. The ER1, which hit the retail market in October 2002, is
available online and through a mix of consumer electronic retail stores,
catalogers, and online merchants. Evolution Robotics mission is to
accelerate the personal robot industry and help spur the creation of a
variety of functional personal robot products that will become indispensable
in our daily lives, at work and home.