Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Amazon’s Astro robot is now an automated security guard

Key Takeaways

  • Amazon Astro for Business is an autonomous security robot that offers intelligent alerts and patrols, making it a cost-effective alternative to human security guards.
  • The robot can cover up to 5,000 square feet, suitable for most small businesses, but may not be enough for larger spaces.
  • Subscriptions like Ring Protect Pro and Astro Secure enhance Astro’s functionality, allowing for longer video history storage, synchronized alerts with Ring Alarm, and autonomous patrols with customizable routes. Monthly fees start at $20.

While everyone has their attention locked on generative AI and all the cool things it can do, Amazon is still grinding away on its Astro robot. Now, the company has announced a new version of Astro designed to serve as an automated security guard for businesses.

What is Amazon Astro for Business?

Essentially, Amazon Astro for Business takes the existing Astro robot and turns it into an autonomous security robot that can offer intelligent alerts, custom patrol routes, and scheduled patrols, much like you’d get with a human security guard but without the hourly pay and degree of human error. The robot can check in on a business after hours or patrol and send alerts if something is wrong, which could end up paying for itself in the long run.

Astro for Business can map up to 5,000 square feet, which should cover the needs of most small businesses, but it won’t be enough for Astro to lock down a vast warehouse or factory. Perhaps Amazon could expand the range in the future, but it’s a good starting point for now.

Some other cool features include a live view and the ability to have a two-way conversation with people near Astro. Astro includes an HD periscope camera with night vision and visual ID to receive unrecognized person smart alerts. That means it can distinguish between an employee working after hours and an unwelcome intruder.

Astro for Business subscriptions

Amazon offers three subscriptions that enhance the functionality of Astro for Business. Depending on how you intend to use the robot for your Business, these may be required.

Ring Protect Pro ($20 monthly)

Ring Protect Pro allows business owners to bump up their security by saving Astro for Business video history for up to 180 days and sync Astro for Business with Ring Alarm to link Ring Motion Detectors and window and door Ring Alarm Contact Sensors for alerts when a Ring Alarm is triggered. Basically, if you’re already invested in the Ring system for your cameras and sensors, your Astro for Business functionality will be significantly enhanced.

Astro Secure ($60 monthly)

This subscription lets Astro for Business patrol autonomously. It’s the robot’s main crux, so it’ll be all but required. It lets you create multiple security monitoring routes tailored to your Business with specific viewpoints and frequencies. It opens up features like smart alerts when Astro hears the sounds of smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. It can even hear glass breaking and send you an alert.

Virtual Security Guard ($99 monthly)

This subscription is for business owners who want to remove themselves from the process, as it lets Rapid Response agents respond when Astro is in Home or Away mode. It works like a traditional security system; if Astro detects something, it’ll alert the agents and let them respond appropriately. They’ll check in on Astro’s live view and call authorities if needed.

Amazon Astro for Business price and availability

Not wanting to waste any time, Amazon’s Astro for Business is available to order today, so if your business could use a set of eyes that don’t get tired, you can snag this cool gadget right now. As you might expect, it won’t be cheap, as Amazon sells it for $2,349.99. The initial purchase comes with a free four-month Ring Protect Pro and Astro Secure trial.

After the trial period, you must pay the extra subscription to make the most of the Astro for Business robot. It’ll work without the subscriptions, but many of the best security features are tied to the monthly extras. If you buy one for your Business, you’ll probably want to spend extra money on Ring Protect Pro and Astro Secure.


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