Amazon Astro: 2 costs, sale date, privateness, extra to know in regards to the Alexa robotic

Amazon Astro: 2 prices, sale date, privacy, more to know about the Alexa robot

Amazon Astro robotic reminds us of Wall-E, a Disney character.


Screenshot/CNET

Astro, Amazon’s autonomous family robotic, made a shock debut on the tech big’s product launch occasion on Tuesday. As we’re discovering, there’s way more to the little bot than its beatboxing expertise (sure, actually). We’ll let you know every thing we all know up to now about Amazon’s robotic assistant, together with two totally different value ranges (it begins at $1,000), what we all know in regards to the sale date, Astro’s limitations and tech specs, and what Amazon is saying about privateness proper now. 

We’ll proceed to replace this story as we get extra details about your burning questions — we have reached out to Amazon for added feedback and data.

How a lot does Amazon Astro value and the way do I purchase it?

Amazon Astro is a Day 1 Version, that means it is accessible by way of invite-only pre order. You possibly can join an invite to preorder the Amazon Astro at present. The family robotic will initially value $1,000. Upon broader launch, Astro’s value will go as much as $1,450. Amazon additionally permits totally free returns. 


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Can I buy Amazon Astro outside the US?

No. So far, Astro can only ship to addresses in the 50 states.

When will Amazon release its Astro robot?

So far, Amazon has only said that Astro will be available later this year. We’ll update this story when we have a clearer date. Presumably, the Astro robot will ship to preorder customers before January 1, 2022.

amazon-event-092821-astro-robot

Yes, Astro winks and it’s precious.


Screenshot/CNET

What does the Amazon Astro robot do?

A lot. Amazon said the Astro, which is like Alexa on wheels, can monitor home security, keep tabs on your elderly and young family members and generally be at your beck and call for Alexa command needs. 

The bot is designed to learn your habits to make it most useful in your everyday life. For example, Astro uses Intelligent Motion to navigate your home, avoid furniture and pets, and learns from how you use it. This means when you’re not using Astro, it’ll hang out in a low-traffic area close by and charge. 

The robot can follow you around as well playing podcasts and music, as well as check on others in the house remotely. Astro can also make calls, send messages, a well as set timers, alarms and reminders. The robot even has a little detachable storage bin to carry and deliver items, like a bottle of water, to specific people in the home by creating a visual ID.  In addition, you can video chat on Astro and the robot will move with you, keeping you in the frame, like the Facebook portal.

Amazon Astro can also integrate with Ring’s security alarm system (more below), capture video clips of events and send them to Ring’s cloud. Read on to learn everything Astro can do with a subscription to Ring Protect Pro and Alexa Guard.

The robot can detect sounds like breaking glass or smoke detectors and alert you. If you think you forgot to turn the stove off, you can send Astro into the kitchen to verify as well. 

In terms of remote elderly care, Astro can reportedly recognize faces, look for an elderly person as well as provide status notifications for caregivers. In addition, with future Alexa Together integration, you can set up routines for medication reminders, write shopping lists, get activity alerts or to check blood pressure. 

What does Amazon say about Astro’s privacy?

On its product page for Astro, Amazon says you can turn off mics, cameras and motion just by pressing a button. You can also use the Astro app to set up “out of bounds zones” that Astro isn’t allowed to go. We’re currently digging more into Astro’s privacy guardrails, including what its camera will or won’t see, and will update this section when we have more details. 

How does Amazon Astro work with a Ring Protect Pro subscription? 

If you activate a 6-month free trial of Ring Protect Pro, Astro will patrol your house with its periscope camera, investigate any unusual activity, and save videos in Ring’s cloud store for 60 days. If Astro detects something amiss — an unidentified person or sound — it’ll alert you remotely.

Without a Ring Protect Pro subscription, Astro only allows for a live view from the app, remote control of the robot and two-way talking.

If you return or deregister the Astro, you’ll lose your trial to Ring Protect Pro, and likely the access that goes with it. 

Here’s what Amazon says if you’re an existing subscriber:

If you are an existing monthly or yearly Ring Protect Plan subscriber, your subscription will continue to automatically renew. If you assign your Astro to the same location as your existing Ring Protect Plan, after your trial period begins, you will automatically receive a credit to your Ring account equivalent to 6 months of payments (excluding taxes), prorated based on your current subscription. If you are currently in a free trial period for a Ring Protect Plan at the same location where you assign your Astro, your existing trial will terminate in favor of your 6-month trial and you will not receive a credit.

How does Amazon Astro work with an Alexa Guard subscription?

Using Alexa Guard with Astro means you’ll get smart alerts for smoke detectors, the sound of breaking glass, as well as dogs barking and motion outside. In addition Alexa Guard with Astro turns smart lights on and off, offers handsfree emergency helpline calling, and can play a siren when activity is detect indoors. 

Without an Alexa Guard subscription, Astro can still send smart alerts about smoke or carbon monoxide detection, glass breaking sounds and operate your smart lights.

As with Ring Protect Pro, if you return or deregister the Astro, you’ll lose your Alexa Guard trial and features.

Here’s Amazon’s policy for Alexa Guard subscriptions:

For existing Alexa Guard Plus subscribers, your subscription will be canceled when you activate your Ring Protect Pro trial. After the 6-month trial period, you can subscribe to Ring Protect Pro or Alexa Guard Plus to maintain access to Guard Plus benefits.

You can suspend your Ring Protect Pro trial benefits by de-linking your Amazon and Ring accounts on Ring.com or using the Ring app. If you cancel your Ring Protect Pro subscription during the 6-month trial period, a refund will not be issued.

What can’t Amazon Astro do? 

There are some limitations of course. Currently, Astro reportedly can’t climb stairs or go outside, for example. Amazon says that Astro can’t send smart alerts for activity sounds while it’s investigating, patrolling or otherwise in motion. We’ll update this list as we learn more.  

What we still don’t know about Amazon Astro (and are finding out now) 

Amazon’s provided quite a big of information to dig into, but we’ve still got questions. Here’s a list of what we’re digging into. We’ll update as we learn more. 

  • Battery and charger details
  • Camera specs
  • Privacy settings and policies
  • How the Astro app will work
  • If there’s a manual control mode
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