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5 key questions to ask when buying a security robot

Identifying, selecting, and implementing a new security solution can be a headache for even the most seasoned corporate security director. Industry innovation, such as the increased use of security robots, drone technology, and artificial intelligence, only adds to the complexity and challenges. To help reduce some of this complexity, we’ve outlined five key questions you need to ask when determining which solutions are right for your business.

  1. 1. What types of anomalies can a security robot detect?Security robots can detect people in the building after hours, open doors, or even leaks and spills. They are often used to expand an existing security program needing after-hours security guard coverage to patrol specific areas of a building. Through machine learning, a robot can learn to identify problems that can be missed by human eyes, and then alert the appropriate individual to take action.
  2. 2. How does a security robot integrate with an existing program?A security robot can integrate with existing systems as a key component of a larger security program. The combined use of robots and humans to identify issues allows for quick resolution, such as access control to identify an individual who does not have the proper authorization to be in a particular area. In this type of situation, the robot would identify the anomaly and notify the appropriate people, including a remote Cobalt robot Specialist who will interact with the unauthorized individual via two-way video.When used for after-hours patrolling, a security robot can augment the existing security guard presence to cover more ground. Also, with a custom built user interface, critical events can be viewed in real-time from a secure computer, giving greater control and access from a central location.
  3. 3. Is a security robot expensive to deploy and maintain?Unlike most other security systems, which may require a significant upfront cost by the customer, deploying a security robot can be more efficient and financially feasible. Even when budgeting for annual maintenance of hardware and software, many security robots can end up costing less than fixed cameras or a security officer.Cobalt robots are priced as a monthly plan, covering robot deployments, robot Specialist integration, and regular software updates. Through this plan, customers also benefit from regular upgrades as capabilities evolve.
  4. 4. How does the Cobalt security robot work?Equipped with seven microphones and more than 60 different sensors, including a laser scanner, thermal, audio and gas sensors, the Cobalt robot can autonomously patrol an area inside a building. The robot can patrol for 45 minutes and will dock at its charging station to recharge for 15 minutes. Even though the robot has a battery capable of patrolling for eight to 10 hours at a time, this approach ensures enough battery is stored for possible situations where it needs more time than usual to address issues.
  5. 5. What’s the difference between a Cobalt robot and other solutions?While there are a number of different robots available on the market, Cobalt robots are specifically designed for indoor use and to respond in real-time to an incident. Although they can operate autonomously, these robots can also help people respond to a problem immediately as part of an interactive system. Greeted by a cordial human Cobalt Specialist, a person can be asked to present a badge to the robot. If that person does not have the proper credentials, the Specialist can notify building security or contact local authorities.The Cobalt robot is meant to be a welcome part of a company’s everyday environment, and can also serve as a friendly face for employees after hours. The engineering and design choices put into the Cobalt robot were made to intentionally facilitate human interactions and decisions and remove the stigma often associated with security robots.

The questions outlined above are really just a start to a string of specific questions to get the specific answers you need. You’ll likely also ask questions like: What are the robot’s sensing capabilities? How long can it patrol before it needs to recharge? Is there a testing period? What are the specific steps from initial agreement to deployment and maintenance? Will there be support given to introduce the robot to personnel? How does the robot respond to anomalies? Will existing internal post orders be followed?

Enabled by intelligent indoor security robots, Cobalt is delivering a security service that combines the friendliness and flexibility of humans with the reliability of machines to improve physical safety and security in the workplace. If you’re interested in hearing our answers to these questions and more, please reach out to us at

The Cobalt robot patrols autonomously, alerting trained Specialists when needed.