PetBot turns pets into egotistical selfie takers

Petcam lets pet owners receive photos of their pet, taken by their pet

Technology trends and news by Steven Loeb
August 31, 2015
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/3fd8

We don't typically write about crowdfunding campaigns, but sometimes the strangest ideas, are the ones that might actually find a market. 

So have you ever looked at your pet and thought it would be funny if they could do human stuff? Like, 'Wouldn't it be adorable if my cat had to go to work every day? He'd have to wear a suit and carry his briefcase in his mouth!' You, know, stuff like that. 

So wouldn't it be funny if your pet could take a selfie? Pure fantasy.... until now!

I bring you: PetBot - a new device, just launched as an Indiegogo campain, that claims to be "The World's First Petcam That Lets Your Pet Send You A Selfie Automatically."

The device allows pet owners to continuously track and monitor the pets they leave home throughout the day. 

Here's how it works: PetBot is actually a treat dispenser, which allows users to record thier own voice, which they can use to call the pet over. Once they come over, the device can take a selfie of them, and the owner can dispense a treat from their smartphone. It basically incentivizes animals to take pictures of themselves (however unwittingly, because it's a dog and a dog has no idea what a photo is) for their owner's benefit. 

Here's quick video of what looks like from the point of view of the owner:

The company says that it use what it calls "petificial intelligence" in order to "detect, record, share and notify you when your pet is active." It uses visual and audio information in order to learn and make decisions on when to notify pet owners and when to interact with their pets. 

PetBot will also notify owners if their dog is barking too much (maybe I should buy one of these for my neighbors whose dog barks ALL DAY LONG when they are not home). 

This is not the first time that PetBot has tried to shop this idea via a crowdfunding site: in 2013, it launched a KickStarter campaign, where it tried to raise $20,000 but was only able to raise $11,610. Back then the device didn't have the pet intelligence back then, nor the selfie function, so obviously the company is hoping that will make all the difference this time around.

So far, in this latest campaign, it has raised $5,190, almost half of what it raised in its entire last campaign, out of $80,000.

It plans to ship out its first devices by Christmas of this year, and is charing $199 for early bird customers. 

I have to admit, at first this idea kind of annoyed me. I mean, pets taking selfies. Is there nothing better we can spend our time, money and resources on than this? And then I remembered some of the other types of selfies that have popped up over the year and, you know what? These are fine compared to those.

Remember the trend among young drivers a few years of turning their camera on themselves while their car is moving. And I thought nothing could be worse than texting while driving. Hopefully people stopped doing this, but I feel like they probably still are.

Then there were the less potentially homicidal, yet equally as annoying types of seflies, including Selfies at Serious Places, which is exactly what it sounds like, only worse, because “serious places” means concentration camps and Chernobyl.


And then there are bookshelfies, or a selfie taken in front of your bookshelf so that everyone could see how well-read you were.

Then there was the guy who recently tried to take a selfie with a rattlesnake. Of course it bit him, and his arm wound up looking like this, and it might have to be amputated:

And then, worst of all, is anyone who looks like this:

So, you know what: fine, let your pets take selfies. Just don't be like any of those other people!

Shout out to The Next Web for catching this. 

(Image source:

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