updated 03:04 pm EDT, Thu August 28, 2014
Teaser video suggests automated Dyson cleaner using 360-degree camera
A video teaser from Dyson suggests the company is preparing to launch its first robotic vacuum cleaner. A video hinting at a launch on September 4th for N223 provides quite a few clues that it will be some form of automated cleaner, though it is not entirely clear if it will be in a similar vein to devices offered by current market leader Roomba.
According to TechCrunch, Dyson spent £5 million ($8.2 million) in conducting robotic vision research with Imperial College London, as well as its own 15-year studies in the field, suggesting this may be where Dyson wants to differentiate itself from Roomba and other similar devices. The video is made to look as if it is being filmed by the cleaner itself, and though chopped at parts, appears to wrap around with a 360-degree field of view. An image on the Dyson website lends itself to the theory of an all-around camera, with a bubble poking upwards from a plastic body, though it is possible the cleaner will not use such a system.
Details on the video's YouTube page claim the company has spent 16 years and £28 million ($46.4 million) on investments, with 200 engineers working on tasks relating to the device.