Media & Blog

OhmniLabs Telepresence Robot Reviews

Tuesday July 23, 2019

OhmniLabs is the home of the Ohmni Telepresence Robots. The Ohmni telepresence robot isn’t just one robot in the expanding telepresence robot market, but rather a powerful and versatile robot that is competitively priced and full of useful features. 

There are two versions currently available in the market: Ohmni Standard and Ohmni Supercam.

The Ohmni telepresence robot has received excellent reviews from users of the device and from experts in the tech industry, and we present some of these telepresence robot reviews below.

Before we delve into the reviews of the Ohmni telepresence robot, let’s take a moment to define telepresence robots and to go over the specs of Ohmni robot itself, as this will contextualize the robot reviews. 

What Is A Telepresence Robot?

The term telepresence is used to refer to any device that lets a person simulate being in one location while they are genuinely in another (remote) location. 

The simplest telepresence devices often have just audio and visual systems that let people view the secondary location through a static camera, along with hearing and or broadcasting audio to that location. Telepresence robots build off of this basic idea by providing the user with some form of mobility in their secondary location. 

Telepresence robots can let people drive around a location, speak with people in that location, and even interact with objects in that location. Telepresence robots that support locomotion through a location often use wheeled bases which are capable of being controlled by the remote user.

Telepresence robots have many benefits over traditional telecommunications systems and non-robotic telepresence devices. These benefits include providing a richer, more engaging experience between remote operators of the device and people in the robot’s vicinity, reducing travel costs and minimizing CO2 emissions, and even letting remote operators manipulate objects from afar.

OhmniLabs’ Offerings

OhmniLabs currently offers two different versions of the Ohmni robot, a Standard version and a Supercam version. 

Ohmni Standard

The Ohmni Standard comes with a 10.1″ HD IPS touchscreen, and it supports sharp and fast high-definition video streaming. The battery lasts for over six hours, and the robot is driven by the Ohmni glide drive featuring brushless motors w/ precision encoders.

Ohmni robots are height adjustable and can be configured to stand either 48 inches tall or 56 inches tall. The 48-inch configuration is appropriate for visiting with people that are more likely to be sitting than standing, while the 56-inch configuration is more appropriate for situations where people are more likely to be standing than sitting.

Ohmni robots are manufactured using custom 3D printing systems and produced out of biodegradable, eco-friendly materials. They come in a color choice of red, black, or white. The Ohmni Standard is available for $1695.

Ohmni Supercam

The Ohmni Supercam comes with all the previously mentioned features plus a powerful 4K 13-megapixel camera featuring Snapshot capabilities and Superzoom for 2x and 3x zoom. The Ohmni Supercam is available for $2195.

Ohmni Telepresence Robot Reviews

Let’s take a look at some of the Ohmni telepresence robot reviews including IEEE, ZDNET and All Home Robotics. A huge thanks to the authors of each review for their thorough research and objective assessments. 

Techlicious

Techlicious praised the Ohmni telepresence robot as a simple communication device that is easy to use for the benefit of those who may not be extremely tech-savvy. They noted that when a call is made with the robot, nobody needs to answer, as the robot automatically engages and announces that you are using it. 

Techlicious said using the robot is a great way for families to stay connected, letting users have conversations with relatives just like they were in the same room together. When you drive the Ohmni over to the docking station, it automatically maneuvers itself into the dock to charge.

All Home Robotics

All Home Robotics described the Ohmni as an excellent alternative to the expensive Double 2 telepresence robot, noting that it is much more affordable than other similar robots. All Home Robotics liked the size of the screen and the quality of the speakers and microphone on the Ohmni, which enables users to be seen and heard with no problem at all. 

The company did note that while the Ohmni had a useful second camera to avoid obstacles, it does not have a crash avoidance system.

Lifewire

Ohmni made Lifewire’s list of the Eight Best Telepresence Robots of 2019. Lifewire liked that the device was one of the more affordable telepresence robots available and that it had a full-size monitor and a large speaker. 

Lifewire also noted that the robot can reach a speed of approximately 3 miles an hour and it has a battery life that lasts about six hours. And while this isn’t enough to make it through a full day without charging, it’s more than sufficient for joining a meeting or visiting remote family for an evening.

Gearbrain

Geabrain gave the Ohmni telepresence robot a positive review, liking how easy it was to set up for use. Gearbrain explained that the robot was extremely easy to utilize, requiring simple usage of the arrow keys on a computer to turn and move backwards or forwards.

Gearbrain liked how the remote telepresence robot could be used to provide elderly parents with companionship and comfort, even if their children live far away. They also suggested it could help hospitalized or homebound children keep up with school by enabling them to attend classes remotely.

Gearbrain did cite the inability to go up or down stairs as a negative, and they wanted support for iOS users, as currently using Google Chrome on a PC is the only way to make use of the Ohmni robot if you are an iOS user.

The Verge

The Verge liked Ohmni because it was substantially cheaper than other telepresence robots which offer similar functionalities, and they noted that the ability to tilt the neck of the robot up and down, in a fashion similar to a nod, is genuinely useful. 

The tilt function allows the robot to get a better view of its surroundings, and it can mimic the nod of a human head, allowing the device to mimic some aspects of body language, which are traditionally absent in telepresence robots. The Verge also praised the Ohmni’s ability to collapse down into a small, portable configuration.

IEEE Spectrum

IEEE Spectrum reviewed the Ohmni telepresence robot and praised how easy it was for even non-tech savvy people to set up and install. IEEE Spectrum liked that you can simply take the robot out of the box, hit the button to turn it on, and it will simply work. 

The review mentioned that the driving interface for the robot was very intuitive and easy-to-use, requiring zero training to make use of the robot, with several users of the driving interface calling it “seamless” and “intuitive”.  In terms of the experience users had communicating with each other, IEEE Spectrum reported its users found the communication much richer, more intimate, and more stimulating than a phone call. 

Users of the remote telepresence robot liked how it could connect them with family in a way that phone calls or video chat couldn’t, and they liked that it saved a lot of commute time as well.

IEEE Spectrum did have some concerns about privacy when it comes to the Ohmni robot, worried that its always-on nature may intrude on some people’s privacy. Spectrum did note that it is possible to put the Ohmni robot into a “do not disturb mode”, but it is difficult for some people to access this feature.

ZDNET

ZDNet reported on the Ohmni telepresence robot and noted that the robot is lightweight, just 18 pounds, which means that there is minimal harm when the robot bumps into a person or object. ZDNet also noted that the lithium iron phosphate batteries used by the telepresence robot are safer than other common lithium-ion batteries and that there is no software to install when using the robot — you simply use an existing Google or Facebook account to log into a website. 

ZDNet called the robot a “ robot for technophobes” and said that the robot has already helped save people’s lives by letting people check in on sick and ailing loved ones.

Hackaday

Hackaday praised the high quality of the 3D printed materials made to comprise the body of the telepresence robot, noting that while parts for other devices created by filament printers are often unimpressive, the Ohmni possesses quality parts.

Conclusion

As reviews for the Ohmni telepresence robot show, the telepresence robot produced by OhmniLabs is an affordable, powerful tool capable of bringing families at a distance closer together. The Ohmni’s high-quality camera, microphone, speaker, drive engine, and other parts make it an affordable yet reliable telepresence robot.

Ready to purchase your own Ohmni Telepresence Robot? Visit the Ohmni Store to order your robot today. https://store.ohmnilabs.com/collections/frontpage