The Androbot B.O.B.

Androbot was a company founded by tech legend, Nolan Bushnell. The company’s mission was simple. To put an “intelligent robot” in every home in the 1980s. Topo was the Androbot that they started off with and while earlier models were very simple, they did start getting better as the years went by culminating in the TOPO 3.

This would lead to B.O.B or “Brains on Board”. B.O.B would have been that useful robot that we were all hoping for and you can see in this video, he could actually fetch items and do voice recognition.

Sadly due to the limitations of the technology at the time and the high price tag, sale were limited on Androbots and we never get the high-end robot experience that we deserved.


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8 thoughts on “The Androbot B.O.B.

  1. vinvectrex says:

    At the time, I was certain this meant I’d have a robot in my home in the very near future. Still waiting for that to happen, although we did briefly host an early generation Roomba. It wasn’t great at fetching things for me, though.

  2. They say that the technology in the 80s was insufficient. Well, we have the technology now. Can that make B.O.B. now and let it run on Windows and Android (see what I did there?)? I only want what the promised THEN, it doesn’t have to be something impossible, but they can make B.O.B. now and charge less than 500 bucks now.

  3. Vinvectrex, we have a robot cleaner at the arcade…it’s not as awesome as the TOPO 3 though. Still…we have a robot. ;)

    Justin, did you have one of those large R-2 units they were selling a couple years back? Did anyone? I know of one but just wondered how well it worked and if it would possibly immediately begin to attack my pets. :P

  4. zelig says:

    Oh, interesting. I had never heard of these as a kid, but I know I wanted an Omnibot super badly. In my head having one would have been like getting to hang out with R2-D2. In the end, though, I think having an Omnibot or a B.O.B. would have left me feeling let down.

    I did, however, have a miniature Omnibot that moved and could pick things up with a with a wired controller. I also had a RoboFan that I loved, especially when you turned the red eye lights on in the dark. I probably had more fun with those two toy bots than I would have with B.O.B.. Or perhaps I’m just saying that to feeling better about my robot-less childhood.

  5. That is incredibly awesome, Max! If I ever hit the lottery maybe I can get my own R2 unit?

    Zelig, you said you owned a miniature Omnibot, was it the Verbot by chance?

  6. zelig says:

    After my comment, I went looking for information on the bot I had and realized it wasn’t a Tomy toy but some type of knock off. It looked like this:

    Though the controller I had was long and narrow and white with yellow buttons. And definitely not as cool as the paired down Verbot.

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