RIP Astro. Amazon Kills Off Alexa Robot… for Businesses

Nigel Dixon-Fyle

Amazon recently decided to discontinue its Astro Robot for business use — a security device that was intended to serve small and medium-sized enterprises. The pivot comes less than eight months after the robot’s launch, a modification in Amazon’s strategy for robotics.

What’s Happening & Why This Matters

Amazon launched the business version of Astro, a security robot, in November of last year. Priced at $2,350 USD, each unit included four months of Ring Protect Pro and Astro Security services. The robot was equipped with an HD periscope camera, night vision, 24/7 live view, and two-way communication — making it an interesting tool for business security.

Despite these features, Amazon announced it would cease the Astro for Business program. The team is redirecting efforts towards the more popular consumer version. According to an email from an Amazon executive, the focus on home robotics was deemed more beneficial. “The progress we’re making in home robotics is where we should focus our resources,” the email stated.

Businesses using Astro can continue until 25 September after which the robots will cease to function. Amazon has promised full refunds and a $300 credit to support replacement solutions. Employees from the Astro business division will transition to the consumer team, retaining their positions within the company.

TF Summary: What’s Next

Amazon’s decision to end the Astro for Business program refocuses on its consumer robotics play. Further, it reflects market demands and potential growth in that sector. Amazon prides itself on agility and customer obsession in response to market feedback while reallocating resources to higher growth areas. As Amazon develops its consumer robotics line, TF expects new products and advancements that boost existing practices and technologies broadly for consumers.

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By Nigel Dixon-Fyle "Automotive Enthusiast"
Nigel Dixon-Fyle is an Editor-at-Large for TechFyle. His background in engineering, telecommunications, consulting and product development inspired him to launch TechFyle (TF). Nigel implemented technologies that support business practices across a variety of industries and verticals. He enjoys the convergence of technology and anything – autos, phones, computers, or day-to-day services. However, Nigel also recognizes not everything is good in absolutes. Technology has its pros and cons. TF supports this exploration and nuance.
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