Vector is the new robot from consumer robotics company Anki. It follows on from the hugely successful Cozmo, with a lot of similarities aesthetically. In fact, at first glance, you might think there is very little difference between the two.
However, when you take a closer look at the hardware and other specs, Vector is really quite a lot more advanced. Evident from the fact Vector features a total of 700 components – nearly double Cozmo at roughly 370! Below we go into a bit more detail about what we think are some of the main similarities and differences between Anki’s two robots.
Cozmo vs Vector: Key Similarities
- Exterior Design – When it comes to the exterior design, everything is pretty much the same. Vector has the same tracks, face and lifting arm. Other external hardware is also in the same position. For example, the camera is inside the ‘mouth’ of both robots and the screen display for expressions and other animations is in the same place.
- Size – There is little difference between the size of Cozmo and Vector. We’d hoped Anki would have bumped this up a bit as we always felt Cozmo was rather small in the flesh.
- Mechanical Function – The tilting head, lift arm and movement style is very similar between the two robots. Both roll around on tank-like tracks.
- Battery Life – The battery life is around the same for both robots. Though Vector does have self-charging technology and will automatically dock when it gets low!
Cozmo vs Vector: Key Differences
Although externally the two robots are extremely similar, as mentioned above there are a lot of differences once we take a look at the hardware. For this section, we thought it would make sense to split it up into the advantages of each over the other.
- Display – Whilst the display may be in the same place and be the same size, Cozmo’s screen can only display in blue and has a lower resolution of 128 x 64. However, Vector can now display in full color with a higher resolution of 184 x 96.
- Processor – One of the biggest drawbacks of Cozmo was that he relied on a companion App and device for processing. With Vector, Anki have massively upgraded the processor from an Arm Cortex 4 in Cozmo to a Qualcomm Snapdragon 200. The resulting speed increase from 100MHz to 1.2GHz means Vector supports on board processing without the need for a companion device!
- WIFI – Vector can connect to a WIFI network independently, which adds so much more functionality – more on this below.
- Microphone – Another limitation to Cozmo was that he had no microphone for interpreting sound and voices. Vector now has his own on board beamforming four-microphone array, meaning he also doubles up as a voice assistant. Similar to an Alexa or Google Home, you can ask Vector questions, set timers, reminders and more.
- Touch Sensor – A capacitive touch sensor located on Vector’s back allows him to interpret tactile signals, like being picked up or stroked.
- Voice – Well how else would Vector answer your questions? With his own voice of course! This only makes the little robot more lifelike.
- Camera – Vectors camera is not only higher resolution at 720p, but also has a wider field of view than Cozmo.
- Infrared Laser Sensor – Mounted on the front, this laser sensor allows Vector to better navigate his surroundings.
- 3 Cubes – Despite Vector being more premium in pretty much every way, he only comes with the one games cube, compared with the 3 that come with Cozmo. We think this is because Anki are focusing on the robot assistant side of things and targeting Vector at an older demographic, whereas Cozmo is also great for kids with lots of games.
- SDK – At the time of writing, the pre-Alpha SDK for Vector is only available to Kickstarter backers and is thought to be available to everyone else sometime from mid-December into the New Year. However, this is still an early version and will no doubt have a lot of bugs. So, at least for a while, the Cozmo SDK is likely to be the better option.
- Price – Vector’s RRP is nearly 40% higher than Cozmo. Although you do get a load more advanced hardware, the lack of cubes could mean the price hike is not justified for some users – especially kids who care more about playing games.
That’s about it for now! We will continue to update this article with any new developments that are released. Alternatively, head over to the official Anki blog for more info.
- Cozmo is a real-life robot like you've only seen in the movies and he's ready to be your loyal sidekick
- Challenge Cozmo to games or use Explorer Mode to see things from his perspective
- With a beginner-friendly interface, Cozmo is the perfect educational robot for kids and adults to learn to creatively code
- Vector is an updating platform, Cloud connected via Wi-Fi so he's always learning and updating with new skills and features. The first major free update is coming to Vector Robots this holiday and will include an option to access Alexa voice service.