Boston Dynamics let the (robot) dogs out

Boston Dynamics announced its lease program for its new dog robot that can

September 26, 2019

Boston Dynamics / The Verge

Boston Dynamics announced yesterday that it’s letting its first major robot out of the kennel. Since June, the company has teased a public release for its signature robo-dog, Spot — now, we’ve got the details on a leasing program that plans to put dozens of robo-dogs on the streets.

So who’s interested? Who? Who? 

Lots of people. Barbra Streisand, probably. Cirque du Soleil, too. Since the robots are customizable, Boston Dynamics is fielding interest ranging from the entertainment business to the construction industry. 

But not everyone will get a chance to play fetch. The robotics are still in their puppy years and developers want to make sure they can keep training the Spot to sit, stay, and roll over.

In other words, applicants have to prove they’ve got a unique use case that could help developers improve the tech down the line. They also have to have a few thousand bucks lying around. Woof. 

See Spot… dance? 

The Spot can walk, trot, climb stairs, and avoid obstacles. It can withstand rain. And it’s even got a dance routine to Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk.” (Don’t believe us? Just watch.)  

What it won’t do: Even though Boston Dynamics has historically built all kinds of four-legged robots for the US military, the company says it’s not interested in turning Spot into an attack dog. That said, they’re still open to defensive applications like bomb disposal.

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