Shortcut Robotics, a Los Angeles-based startup, has begun beta testing its first telepresence robot.
The beta tests will be conducted in two phases in order to make updates in between each phase.
The robot operates as a driveable video call, giving users the ability to maneuver around a remote environment and interact naturally with the people there.
The Shortcut robot replicates a user’s physical presence and will offer automatic height adjustment to let users feel like themselves while driving it.
Maxim Baranov, co-founder and CTO, Says: “We expect to receive valuable feedback from beta testing that will inform final design decisions as we move towards a full product launch.
“The beta testing phase is expected to run for approximately 50 days and be followed by deliveries to the first customers.”
Meanwhile, another, longer-established startup – Ava Robotics – says its telepresence robot has proved a success in one of its instllations.
Kristina Lazos, director of marketing for the Four Seasons Hotel in Boston, says the company trialed Ava Robotics’ telepresence robot to “improve connections and create an immersive event experience”.
During the event, the on-site Four Seasons account team was able to meet and connect with clients and prospects in a “face-to-face” experience using the robot and its Webex videoconferencing tool and autonomous movement functionality.
The hospitality industry is utilizing robots to expand sales and marketing reach with virtual tours, immersive sales presentations, remote training and onboarding, and interactive demos.