What is telepresence?

The concept of telepresence technology may be interpreted in different ways but it means one thing. It’s a system, which makes distant speakers feel as if they were really present. Every innovation idea has a hidden goal to somehow improve the world. Initially, the telepresence technology was created for conferences. The teleconference systems, used today, differ from other systems of videoconference connections (Skype, Lin Phone, Viber, etc.). First of all, it features stereo sounding, life-sized image transfer of distant participants, elongated “video wall” made of several LCD-panels or projectors, all of which requires a special room and facilities. Due to the high complexity, the price of the solutions of this kind starts at a hundred thousand dollars. Far from every company can afford it. While humanity advances a grand pas and progress is impressive, telepresence robots have become an interesting solution of the problem.

The subject of robots is very complicated and wide in general and includes a variety of questions arising in the process of robot creation.
Some of them are:
1. Platforms.
Development of a platform capable of overcoming obstacles, such as doorsteps, to say nothing of staircases, is a time consuming process.
2. Re-charging.
You have to rack your brains to engineer how to relieve the robot of a tangle of wires and provide autonomous re-charging.
3. Audio and video quality.
4. And why do you need it at all?

The commonest answer to the question “why?” is inability to appear at a scheduled meeting (due to objective, unexpected causes), which can’t be postponed or cancelled.
As it was mentioned earlier, progress is impressive and robots are infiltrating our everyday life step by step.
First suggestions about possible fields of applications of telepresence devices were formulated by the American scientist Marvin Lee Minsky in 1985. He outlined three main directions:
Mining and petrology;
Nuclear technologies;
Research and development of subaquatic resources.

Habrahabr has already published descriptions of telepresence robots, which could be called “avatars” at a stretch. The devices of this kind have been used to help children, who cannot attend school, get education. They are developed and manufactured by iRobot и InTouch Health. Equipped with direct and back channels of connection, these robots are controlled via iPad.

In January, 2015 FDA gave the green light to ‘s RP-Vita telepresence platform. It opens the door to medical institutions for robots. The company furnished the robot with thirty sensors, which enable the device to avoid obstacles (people included). If necessary, the robot is able to map an alternative route to the destination. Robot is outfitted with an HD optical system, which allows a doctor to examine even the eyes of a patient to better evaluate his/hers condition. In addition to the telepresence function, the robots can store and present to the medical staff electronic versions of patients’ case records. Approbation of this device is carried on in seven hospitals of North America. They are Dignity Health, Sacramento, CA; Hoag Memorial Hospitial Presbyteria, Orange County, CA; Providence Saint Joseph Medical Center, Burbank, CA; Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA; St. Mary’s Medical Center, Huntington, WV; Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, OH; and Instituto de Salud del Estado de Mexico, Toluca, Mexico.

At present, this robot is used for condition monitoring of patients with blood strokes.
Other telepresence robots are used in American clinics for additional teleconsultations by specialized doctors and boards of doctors; and also for distant visits of contagious patients by their relatives to avoid direct contact.

Soon in one Russian bank will appear a robot-consultant, controlled from the central department, is used for contact with the bank administration if urgent decision-making is necessary;
and or primary service of clients.

Conclusion: Different robots are in need; different robots are important. But they are far from being affordable to everyone.

We offer a small-sized, cheap robot, which will make your life easier.
You are welcome to our office in Moscow (Russia) or San Rafael (USA)