Buying a robot

We was thinking to buy robots for social and health education in 2015.

We have hardly any requirements.

  • Too complicated they can not be.
  • Should not take much to be programmed.
  • In those speaking robots is a requirement that they speak the Finnish language.

At the end is a summary of purchases and their status.

Justocat is  one Carerobot. It is quite expensive (€ 1200) But a simple, does not seem to do more than the purr like a cat.

Less expensive therapy cat is  Joy for all (100€). First only in America but today you can buy it from Europe.

The old familiar is Paro, it is a bit more diverse but also more expensive (€ n.4500).

Budgee is the second new robot to buy. It costs 2000-3500€.

Opinsys sells programmable teddy bear, which costs only 150 €.

Another inexpensive little robot is Robbo that we may soon acquire.


Nao is a bit more versatile robot,  which can also purchase version with the programming environment . Nao price is 6500€, edu package 9500 €.

Another is zora robot, which is based Nao who is programmed in particular for social and health care -side. It costs 16,500 €. Zorarobot sold it in Finland but not anymore. Zora robot has also been tested in the field of trade.


I’ve also been thinking about The telepresence robots  but their manufacturers / vendors is quite difficult to find. One option is Twinbot. It costs approx. 800 €. The second is the Swedish Giraff, which found the seller in Finland via manufacturer. It is priced monthly fees, which accumulates more than 9000 over two years.

I also found padbot robot, which not include tablet device, but even a cheap android tablet will do. It costs $ 790 plus freight $ 250, but payment will be a challenge.


In general, robots sellers are hard to find. I think the hype to be still quite at the beginning 🙂

But years from now is already sure to be a different situation.

I begin to study the more detailed these robots and I’ll be happy to receive comments and tips on the subject.

Situation Update 12/2015. The acquisition went wrong, mainly as regards the Public Procurement Act. We are at the end of 2015, still without the robots (except a dancing toy robot  that colleagues  purchased for me as gift :)). I’m sure i get more quickly two robots (Padbot and Alpha 2) which I ordered to home.

Update 1/16. Nao robot was purchased, after all, has not yet been delivered.












 Padbot U1 robot came home, it is easy and simple robot. Only apps from appstore and account to padbot service. This is good and cheapest telepresence robot. You can buy these in Europe from Roboshop.


  • Price
  • Charging station, that Padbot can connect automatic
  • Easy to use



  • Network must be very good, that app can connect
  • The Bluetooth -connection is susceptible to interference









Nao came at the end of january. We try to make Nao several hours entertainer with a program that does not require much user intervention.


  • Graphic programming with Choregraphe is easy
  • Suitable also with children



  • There are very few ready-made programming instructions
  • Resistance
  • Price











I bought a 2/16 robot Buddy home, delivery until the end of the year. >6/2017->2018->2019>4/2020?














Immediately after that, I bought a Aido, which is a quick buyer inexpensive (less than $ 500 + taxes and duties). Maybe 8/2017? No, maybe Q4/2018.
















I ordered more robots to work in 4/16. Justocat (1200€) is very simple. One button, meow and burr are only functions. This is toy, not robot.


















and Robbo (320€) for programming.









Antbo robot for programming









I bought Antbo 3 pieces for programming in 5/16 , the price of less than € 200. At home 1/17. Total cost was 272€ (200+51,45 Vat+20 DHL). No good for programming, maybe driving competition?






















Then Twinbot telepresence robot price of 750 €. TwinBot is more fragile than Padbot and the possibility of charging is old-fashioned. Bonus of the possibility of remote access to a computer. It’s very hard to setup, we are in still in start. I can’t use it at all, it’s useless.















And yet Cowarobot -suitcase to home at price of 400 €. This was quite a new acquaintance. Delivery delay from 10 / 16-> 2017->2018? The ban on batteries in the airplane slows delivery and the EU is even more problematic than others. Deliveries elsewhere have begun but I must wait a few more months. That’s because there is an additional battery that they promised to delivery. It came 8/2018 and took over two years to come (new record :)). Works like Budgee via Bluetooth.
















In August, I bought to home robot vacuum cleaner (Neato botvac d85, 600 €)



















and for programming Make Block mBot (100 €). MBot’s additional sensors were again a problem of acquisition. Fortunately, the Chinese hardware manufacturer agreed to sell, so I ordered a sensor package from there.






Padbot T1








Yet end of the month I bought Padbot T1. It came home 15.11.2016 after customs problems.






Roboming Fellow










I bought Roboming Fellow -robot (188€) to home in October. Delivery 8/17? This project does not success (announced in 8.5.17) but i get money back. No money, first loss for myself.






Hubsan 501









Then i bought Hubsan H501S 1080p FPV -quadcopter (340€). First fly in 29.1.2017 and only three propellers broke, so it went good :). There is little use for this.







Alpha1 is social robot











I had to buy some temp for Nao -robot, so i bought Alpha 1 -robot (499€) to work in december 2015. Suitable for presentation and entertainment and is easy to use. Even this can be programmed a bit graphically. speech can be recorded by eg Aucacity, which also has a Vocoder effect easily with robotic sound. Speech can be recorded by eg Aucacity, which also has a Vocoder effect easily with robotic sound. I buyed another in autumn 2018.


  • Price
  • Ready programs
  • Suitable also with children


  • No speech but you record it
  • A modest loudspeaker, the sound is left under the servo drives






Braava cleaning mop









27.12.16 i got to home Braava 390T mop (309€ Robotcenter).








I helped to get another project for robot purchases. The Braava mop above, the Hobot 268 window cleaner and the Budgee transportrobot came in.

Hobot 268

Hobot 268














Joy for all








I have seeked Joy for all -cat for very long time. At last i got it from Ebay. Price is 135€ and it includes all costs (delivery, tax and customs duty). Here’s a good and cheap option for that Justocat.







uArm Swift









I bought uArm Swift  -robothand from Indiegogo in february. It’s very useful and quite cheap (552$ includes delivery costs). It came in 7/2017, but introduction goes to autumn. Not movable, only fixedly in use. Thin stem flexes in mobile use too easily and I have not come up with an easy way to support it.

















I ordered Alpha -2 robot 9.12.2015 and it came at last 15.2.2017! Total price was 930€ (740+20 delivery+170 Alv). This is very promising robot, no programming needed. However, the problem with speech when there is no guide and an accent of English must be good. However, it did not sell as Alpha2 but as Lynx with Alexa -support . It is at a price for Alpha2, which is not very expensive.


  • Durable
  • Good basic functions (dance 10pcs, jokes, stories and taking pictures)


  • Cannot program
  • Requires precise english (cf. Alexa and rally-english)
  • Not moving like two steps in its direction





Amazon Echo Dot











I bought via Ebay Amazon Echo Dot device (price 94€). It’s good base for home automation (IoT).













A smart light suitable for Alexa is eg Xiaomi Yeelight (20 €). These are found in various online stores.






Martian mVoice






I purchased the second Alexa device as a Martian mVoice clock in September 2017. The price comes at a bit over € 200.


More Alexa-controlled IoT devices came at the end of 2017. Both I bought through Ebay.














Wifi socket. There are many manufacturers here. This is Jinvoo (16.4 €). Also works with Apple / Android Apps.







Appkettle water cooker











Appkettle water cooker (155 €). Also works with Apple / Android Apps.








Hasbro dog











On April 9, 2017, I bought a friend to cat through Ebay and because Hasbro is a good firm, I bought a Golden pup dog (132 €).





BBC Micro:bit

BBC Micro:bit











On April 18, 2017, I ordered a few BBC Micro: bit robots from England. In addition, they are interesting in the price (22.5 € with costs), as well as not being guided by programming in a certain direction. There are no wheels or feet below, so moving does not come first to mind, as in many other programmable robots. It requires creativity to get good projects at this time 🙂





Prusa i3

Prusa i3









4.5.2017 I ordered a 3D printer from E-Ville (Prusa i3 based building kit, 250 €). The power supply is bad, its replacement takes a couple of months. We continued building after the power supply came.



Prusa i3

Prusa i3



















16.5 I bought one more social robot. Robelf ($ 349 + 120 $ charging station). Should be home in the fall 2017?->2018? Delivery started at 6/2018… They canceled this project in 12/18 and i get money back.

Interestingly, however, Robelf exists and sells in some stores. It costs almost € 2,000.













and a Travelmate travel bag (380 €). Coming in fall 2017, even before Christmas? These promises so much (even a travel assistant in many languages) so I bought another one (size M, € 600) before the end of the campaign. Deliveries will begin on 20.11.2017. > 8/2018? The ban on batteries in the airplane slows delivery and the EU is even more challenging than others. Deliveries elsewhere have begun but I must wait a few more months. This does not include an additional battery (Like Cowarobot), but the removable battery is also a problem for them.





Appbot Link

Appbot Link









Whenever you buy a small and cheap robot from shop, you have to do it 🙂 Power sells the Appbot Link watchdog (140 €). This is a good device for monitoring and reviewing things. I bought later another one. This may also be thought of as an Telepresence robot.


  • Price
  • Quality camera
  • Does not require a good network to work


  • Too small for demonstration use
  • No good charging station (Run with Apps a meter away from where the robot goes for the charging)



In November, I buy some robots and other equipment for the employer. I will return to them later. At least Mototiles and Bestic from a Finnish seller are on the list.














Mototiles is a good and easy-to-use game that helps in all physical condition improvement / maintenance. The bargain was 5000 €.














The Bestic Feeding Machine is suitable for certain special groups that keep themselves moving and swallowing. Price 6500 €.






On November 17, 2017, I bought two robots through Ebay. I have long been studying these kinds of human-looking robots, so I bought Hanson Robotics Professor Einstein (203.2 + 33.88 transportation). In addition, a small Cozmo toy from Anki (193.46 + 25 transport).


Professor Einstein











Einstein came after one week (seller Roboshop) . It’s hard to get connected at network.
















Cozmo is a fun guy. A very social case. Good for childrens. Cozmo can also be programmed.






Alfawise S60 (110$)from Gearbest in Black Friday.











This can also wash tables. Keep all the time in electricity even though there is a battery. The safety belt must be used.



Finally, in the beginning of December, I bought the above Bestic feed robot, Padbot U1 telepresence robot (because it is available directly from stock in Europe), Denver tablet for Padbot U1. I also bought Alexa Dot.




Cool clock


Local weather










On 1/2018 I bought a new Amazon echo spot (119 pounds) from the Heatrow airport. It has a screen and a camera.

On January 26, 2018, I bought Codey Rocky ($ 81 = 64 + 17). I saw this in the Bett fair and impressed with the promising device.

Codey Rocky

Codey Rocky









8.2.18 I ordered modular Fable robothands for the 30-day test. I got acquainted with these at Bett fairs.


fable-robot hands










Packet came 22.2 and tests begin.





Good mechanics

Programming graphical or Python








I bought this and paid € 950 in the test version in April. This is also durable for mobile presentation (see Uarm).


Although Alpha-2 has been challenged and I did not like this Alpha-2 / Lynx, I bought Lynx (735+64 transport+199 Alv) via Ebay. Had to come in May, some error in delivery, moved to a month. Lynx has control and avatar features that interest me. Alexa is also more involved than Alpha-2.



Fairy drone

Fairy drone









I bought Fairy Drone ($ 149) from Kickstarter in May. Will it be maybe before 8/18.





Moving dog









The mobile and talking toy puppy ordered via Ebay came 8.6 (40 €).



8/18 went to France for a survey of Pepper for Education. I could buy such to job. Likewise, I asked Ubtech Cruzr and Beam pro robots. New robots were found, so they was also checked. There was a new company in China that maybe one robot will be ordered. Eventually, it looks like two Pepper and one Alice Pro robot is on the list. The challenges of public procurement bring problems, so it is hard to go, yes, 31.12.2018 is the absolute deadline for the delivery (to be informed) because it is an investment money. Delivery times are in the 8vk Q4 period.


9/18 arrived Uarm (with Raspad). It’s the same robotic arm that I bought a year ago. Here is a Rasperry-powered tablet device and a camera head for robots.


9.10 I bought home Alpha 1 Pro (, 499 €).


2.11 I bought two Pepper for Education robots from Loomistekniikka. The price with the charging station is less than € 16,000 (VAT 0%). Up to now, the most expensive robot I bought. Peppers came 12/2018. We will start with the introduction and programming with students on 17.12.2018.

Pepperit ja Alice

Peppers and Alice









  • Graphic programming with Choregraphe is easy



  • There are very few ready-made programming instructions
  • Resistance
  • Price
  • Not suitable for children (Can’t see so down)


5.11 I bought the Alice Pro robot directly from the factory in China. The price is with transportation costs € 11,000 (VAT 0%). the Finnish language is translated with our students at the school. Did it come at the end of the year? Very well (arrived on 21.12).


Alice pro

Alice pro











So I’m still getting 2 * Travelmate (7/18->2019?), Buddy (4/2020?), Aido (Q4 2018?). 4 robots are still coming, with one exception maybe in 2018? No, so waiting goes on in 2019.



At the end of January, I finally managed to acquire Evondos, a pharmaceutical distributor, which we have been trying to get since 2016. Delivery and deployment training was in early February.



Evondos mediacal distributor











  • Good support
  • A functional and reliable device
  • Safe medicine distributor


  • Needs training to start


I buyed Vector by Anki robot and vector space  from Amazon UK in 16.4. It costed 289,90€ with all costs.


Vector by Anki











Varram came 5/2019. It can be timed, it is a good toy and a delicatessen for cats and dogs.












Varram app










Varram app follows well the action.



  • Price
  • Works well


  • Cat interest varies (as with other similar products)



So I’m still waiting 2 * Travelmate (7/18->2019->4/2020?), Buddy (4/2020?), Aido (Q4 2018->2019->Q3/2020?). 4 robots are still coming, waiting goes also on in 2020.

1.2 I bought a Marscat cat ($ 678). Delivery up to 3/2020, which is a fast time for crowdfunding. Maybe 9/20?. I believe this is even better than the Paro seal.

9.4 I bought 5 mBot robots ($ 203) for programming use. The seller was some Facebook Shopify-based store. Let’s see if they come and when? It was fraud, i had to shutdown my bank card.

Corona time slows down everything you do. You can also be quite careful when purchasing.

1.5 I bought a social Misa robot (Indiegogo, approx. € 330).  I bought another before the end of the campaign for € 299. There may be sales in stores as early as June, for us crowdfunders maybe 8/20? Problems arose, ->10/20?


Vacuum cleaner

Proscenic 820t










I bought a new robotic vacuum cleaner with a mop (PROSCENIC 820T). It cost only 166 € (in auction), in the store it might cost 250 € ?.

8/20 I bought 3 mBot robots from Amazon (223€), maybe that’s better shop.


I have bought 52 different types of service robots and other Digitalisation product! Prices vary 20-14.500€. One purchase has so far been totally unsuccessful (Roboming Fellow), one project was canceled (Robelf) but I got the money back and one purchased device does not work (Twinbot is a scrap). The benefits of a few other devices have remained small, but this whole pioneer work has gone well after all.

Robots that have been purchased from outside the EU will have to increase the price of VAT in 24% and more than 150 € prices including customs fee.

Batteries have become a new problem. Many packages come with passenger planes, where batteries can not be placed in the boot. Even cargo must not contain a battery.


I changed spreardsheet texts so, that type is semirobot, if robot does not need programming.

Robot Type Manufacter country Status Price Comment
Nao Social France ok 1/16 9500€ Very modest old device. Suits for programming and amusement purposes
Padbot Telepresence


China ok 1/16 750€ Doesn’t include tablet. No need for programming,easy to use, needs good network connection
Buddy Social France maybe 4/2020? 750+231€ Updates before delivery. I added hand with videoprojector. Indiegogo.
Alpha-2 Social China ok 2/17 930€  Indiegogo
Aido Social Usa maybe 2018? 600+250€ Updates before delivery, intelligent charging (250€) and videoprojector. Indiegogo
Justocat Therapy


Sweden ok 5/16 1200€ Simple toy, not a robot
Robbo Programming Finland ok 5/16 320€ Lab-pack includes two devices. Arduino Ide -> c++ -programming
Antbo Programming China ok 1/17 272€ Three pieces. Arduino Ide -> c++ -programming. Indiegogo
Cowarobot Logistics


China ok 8/18 400€ New device. Indiegogo Bluetooth and app
Twinbot Telepresence


Usa ok 6/16 750€ Unlike Padbot, twinbot can be programmed
Neato botvac d85 Cleaning


Usa ok 8/16 600€ Quality vacuum cleaner
Makeblock mBot Programming China ok 8/16 100€ Scartch and Arduino Ide -> c++ -programming
Padbot T1 Telepresence and security


China ok 11/16 85€ The compact chassis, easy to carry. Requires Android / Iphone Phone (not included). Kickstarter.
Hubsan H501S 1080p FPV Security


China ok 11/16 340€ E-Ville
Alpha 1 Social China ok 12/16 499€ Elisa
Braava 390T Cleaning
Usa ok 12/16 309€


BBC Micro:bit Programming UK ok 5/17 n.23€ grafical, Python and Javascript programming
Travelmate Logistics


Usa maybe 2/2018? n.380€
Appbot link Security


South-Korea ok 6/17 140€ A valid little robot
Mototiles Game


Danmark ok 12/17 5000€ An easy to use useful game
Professori Einstein Social USA ok 12/17 237€ Talking dude
Cozmo Social USA ok 12/17 219€ Playful social little bet
Fable Robothand Danmark ok 4/18 950€ (testversion) For programming, good for mobile use.
Codey Rocky Programming China ok 4/18 n.95€ Programmable device with many sensors
Lynx Social China ok 6/18 998€ Alexa ai and Avatar feature
Pepper Social France ok 12/18 14700€ Edu-version
Alice Pro Social China ok 12/18 11500€ Servicerobot
Evondos E300 Healtcare Finland ok 1/19 no price Service robot, typical rent 200€/month
Vector Social USA ok 4/19 290€ Anki’s newest creation. The price includes the base
Varram For animals Singapore ok 5/19 79$ Toy and delicatess dispender for dogs and cats