The Chinese mobile company Xiaomi surprises the tech world with its Spot Robot contender, the CyberDog.

Acquired by Hyundai, the Spot Robot is the most popular quadruped robot developed by Boston Dynamics. The Spot Robot’s legged mobility enabled researchers and engineers to test it in diverse projects like NASA’s Mars exploration to assist doctors remotely. Although not a weapon, it is also tested by the military and law enforcement.

With the launch of CyberDog, Xiaomi takes a significant leap into the Robotic Space. The first look of the bio-inspired quadruped robot feels like a glossy upgrade of the Spot Robot. However, CyberDog results from Xiaomi’s Prowess Engineering incorporated into an open-source companion robot on which developers may build.

Xiaomi’s CyberDog is the company’s first attempt at building quadruped robots for the open-source community and developers worldwide. It is an excellent opportunity for robotics fanatics to co-create or compete with other Xiaomi fans, driving the development and potential of quadruped robots mutually.

Xiaomi CyberDog

With Xiaomi’s in-house designed servo motors, CyberDog is calibrated for its incredible speed, agility, and range of movements. The four-legged robot can move at top speeds of up to 3.2m/s and has a maximum torque output and rotation speed of 32Nm/220rpm. It joins the line of robot that performs a backflip.

The Brain of the CyberDog is powered by NVIDIA’s Jetson Xavier NX platform, an AI interface that consists of 384 CUDA cores, 48 Tensor cores, six Carmel CPU-cores, and two cores devoted to deep learning.

The quadruped robot is outfitted with 11 high-precision sensors to imitate biological species accurately. It also includes AI interactive cameras, touch sensors, a GPS module, an ultra-wide-angle fisheye lens, and Intel’s RealSense D450 camera for depth detection. These components give the CyberDog an exceptional ability to sense, understand, interact with its environment, and operate semi-autonomously.

The vision sensor system of CyberDog is the foundation for autonomous object tracking, SLAM, and centimeter-scale obstacle detection and navigation. The CyberDog studies its surroundings in real-time, builds navigational maps, plots its path, and avoids impediments. Also, it can follow its owner and avoid obstacles when combined with human posture and face recognition tracking technology.

Like a perfect pet, CyberDog can be managed, operated, and controlled through voice assistants by installing a wake word or solely using its remote or smartphone app. Xiaomi is experimenting with various interaction possibilities to make CyberDog a complete companion robot.

CyberDog is also equipped with three type-C connections and one HDMI port that allows for integrating a wide range of unique hardware add-ons and software systems, such as a searchlight, panoramic camera, motion camera, LiDAR, and so on.

A global co-creation initiative is presently underway to enhance robotics in several frontier domains. Xiaomi enables developers from all over the world to make contributions, engage with one another, and progress together through its open-source program. Sounds similar to the Facebook Droidlet, right?

In addition to open-source algorithms, Xiaomi reconstructs and optimizes in-house developed core components to make CyberDog work as efficiently as possible. As of today, Xiaomi is delivering 1,000 copies of CyberDog to Xiaomi fans, engineers, and robotic enthusiasts so that they can explore the possibilities of CyberDog.

Xiaomi also plans to create a “Xiaomi Open Source Community” to share progress and findings with developers from all around the world, and a robotics laboratory will be established to allow engineers to pursue future advancements.

The quadruped companion robot is an outstanding invention to assist humans indoors, outdoors, or in challenging situations. Currently, CyberDog is launched in China with a head start of 1000 units of CyberDog that will be available for around 9,999 Chinese Yuan.