User-following gita wheeled cargo robot gets a smaller sibling
Pulling your stuff around in a cart is all very well and good, but … what if you want to keep your hands free? That's where the gita wheeled robot was designed to come in. There will soon be a smaller version available, known as the gitamini.
Both robots are manufactured by Piaggio Fast Forward – it's a US-based subsidiary of Italy's Piaggio, which makes the iconic Vespa scooter.
Like the gita (pronounced "jeeta") before it, the gitamini uses a combination of depth-sensing optical cameras and radar to initially pair itself to its user, and then follow them as they walk down the street or through buildings. It's able to autonomously avoid obstacles as it does so, self-balancing on its two side-by-side wheels like a Segway. It can be picked up by its front and rear handles in order to be carried over things like steps or curbs.
The gitamini weighs 28 lb (13 kg), has a top speed of 6 mph (10 km/h) and can carry up to 20 lb (9 kg) of gear in its lidded cargo compartment – the lid can be left open or even removed for tall loads. It reportedly has a battery range of about 30 miles (48 km) or 6 hours per under-2-hour charge, and will automatically power itself down if it's left idle for more than half an hour.
For comparison, the bulkier and more expensive gita – which is still available – weighs 50 lb (23 kg), can carry 40 lb (18 kg), and has the same top speed but a shorter 20-mile (32-km) or 4-hour runtime.
Although the gitamini isn't available for purchase quite yet, prospective buyers can register for updates via the link below. It will be priced at US$1,850 (the gita goes for $2,950), and is being offered in color choices of yellow or beige.
Source: Piaggio Fast Forward