Take A Look At The Future Of Virtual Business Travel

Cisco Robo boss 08

How many times have you made a Skype call where you picked up your computer and walked it around to show your caller something?

The problem is, your buddy is utterly dependent on you to move around.

Cisco and iRobot have solved that problem with a new robo-boss that will be available in 2014. It lets the person on the other end control their whereabouts and it uses some pretty cool autonomous and sensor tech to do it, Youssef Saleh, an iRobot VP, told us. 

Just outfit the robot with a schematic of the building in the robot’s iPad app. Tap the place you want to go and it rolls there on its own, avoiding objects and other people. No joystick steering required, Saleh says.

The companies wouldn’t announce pricing, but iRobot charges $4,000 to $6,000 for a similar Robo doctor unit designed for hospitals. We expect this unit to cost about the same.

Meet the iRobot Ava 500 for enterprises.

The robot uses iRobot's autonomous navigation to drive and avoid people, objects.

It integrates with Cisco TelePresence and can post instant messages and presence info.

Your co-worker can drive it to your office.

The remote user controls it with an iPad app.

Its WiFi has enterprise-grade security, so conversations can be private.

When the session is complete, the Ava 500 automatically returns to its charging station.

Colleagues don't have to travel to hang out in the office.

It integrates with Cisco's room-based videoconference unit for presentations.

It uses HD audio and video and has 1080p resolution for a life-like experience.

If you disembody the head, you get a high quality desktop videoconferencing unit.

It can be a virtual boss, a tour guide, a remote trainer and so on.

Cisco and iRobot see this as the next incarnation of videoconferencing.

Could this be the next weird tech exec perk?

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.