10-13-2008: See my video where I control a Rovio with a Nintendo Wii Remote over the Web!
NOTE: The WowWee Rovio can be can be configured using either a Windows PC or Apple Macintosh. See below for details.
Possibly the most exciting member of WowWee's 2008 new product line, the Rovio is a mobile robotic web camera with omnidirectional movement ability thanks to its unique tri-wheel design. The most exciting feature of Rovio is that it incorporates the incredible Northstar technology. Northstar is a system that is like having a micro-GPS system for your home, allowing the Rovio to navigate your home with pinpoint accuracy. With Northstar Rovio always knows exactly where it is and where you want it to go next.
The built-in web camera has full audio and video streaming capability so you can spy on your home from anywhere in the world you have a Web connection and uses the reliable 802.11b/g protocols for true WiFi access. Check in to see if you home is secure, or to get a comforting look at pets, or to dynamically web conference with family members or colleagues at work. Rovio's neck-mounted camera and microphone can be accessed over the web from cell phones, personal computers, or even some video game consoles (if they are web enabled). Use your personal computer to create navigation routes for Rovio by marking way points in your home with its easy to understand companion software. Simply mark a way point and Rovio will move to the desired location without any need for you to micromanage the navigation; just point and click! Since Rovio has self-docking capabilities, you can send it back to base for a recharge with a single touch of a web browser button.
[UPDATE] - Evolution Robotics, the wizards behind the Northstar navigation technology behind Rovio, has created some videos to show you just how easy it is to set up patrol routes with Rovio. Click here to watch these videos now.
- You can use simple “go-to” commands to assign easy to understand labels to important places in your home or office, then tell the robot to go there with a single click of your browser. You can do this remotely from anywhere you have a web connection or from a mobile phone. For example, “go to the kitchen”.
- Rovio can patrol your house using predetermined routes you set up with easy-to-use software based on a simple point and click interface. Set up routes to make sure the the pets have been fed and are staying out of trouble, monitor potential entry points for intrusion, or check to see if certain appliances have been turned off or not.
- With the help of its micro-GPS system, if a child or pet knocks the Rovio off course, it immediately rights itself and continues on its predetermined route; a big plus when you are remotely monitoring it and can’t be there to pick it up.
- It can effortlessly find its charging station when its batteries start to run low, from anywhere in your home, and dock with the station with pinpoint accuracy.
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