I want to start by mentioning that setting up a demo with the Revolve Robotics team was an absolute pleasure – they responded to my request in less than an hour and were extremely pleasant and helpful. I had a lot of fun testing Kubi – due to the simplistic design of the robot, there weren’t many functions to explore, but my conversation with the team kept me engaged and amused. I have to say, the fact that not only one, but three people from Revolve Robotics spent their time telling me about their product absolutely puts this brand’s customer service on a whole new level – I’d give them 10 stars, if I could.
As for Kubi itself – it’s basically a tablet (Apple, Android and Microsoft with Bluetooth 4.0) on top of a rotating stand. Although it may seem a bit boring, compared to the mobile telepresence robots, a stationary machine actually has numerous advantages. Our conversation had great quality all throughout the demo, as the Kubi didn’t move around, losing the WiFi signal. The video conferencing platform we used for the demo was Zoom. This program has integrated the Kubi software, allowing the user to turn the robot sideways. I wasn’t able to tilt the head, although it’s going to be possible in the near future. A great plus is that there’s no limit to the people using a Kubi at the same time. The robot can be controlled by every person in the conference call by requesting it. You can rotate the head up to 300 degrees and since you have access to the camera at the back of the tablet, your view is 360 degrees.
The fact that Kubi is stationary drastically lowers the price of the robot, although it still fulfills the main function of a telepresence robot – effective communication. You don’t have to worry about a robot roaming the halls, getting stuck in impossible places, casually running over people and falling down stairs. Although this limited autonomy could be a problem for some, it also means endless run time (if Kubi is placed near a power source), virtually no way of damaging the robot, simple interface that can be taught to anyone and hundreds of dollars saved.
A couple of interesting features are the automatic activation, as well as the ability to record the motion of the robot and create presentations. Kubi works with video apps like Vidyo, Zoom and Webex, as well as specialized equipment like EMR systems and connected telehealth applications. The robot has a battery life of 4 hours, so even if it’s not plugged in, you have plenty of time.
Here’s a simple list of pros and cons that sums up the review!
+ High quality connection
+ Amazing customer service
+ Simple interface, easy to use
+ Light and easy to move
+ Safe for everyone
+ Can work with various programs (and telehealth apps)
+ Endless runtime
+ No way to damage the robot
+ Automatic activation
+ Ability to record the motion of the robot
- Limited autonomy
- You need to own a tablet
- You need to download a video app