Maps


'Maps' Articles

iRobot CEO Clarifies Indoor Mapping Comment, Says Company 'Will Never Sell Your Data'

iRobot has responded to an article posted earlier this week by Reuters, in which it was said that company CEO Colin Angle "could reach a deal to sell its maps to one or more of the Big Three in the next couple of years," representing Apple, Amazon, and Google. Angle said that such shared data could bolster the intelligence of other smart home devices like light bulbs, thermostats, and security cameras. Many users became fearful of such personal home data flowing freely between multiple companies, and in response today Angle and an iRobot PR representative have confirmed that "iRobot will never sell your data." In a letter sent to ZDNet, Angle said that information gathered by its Roomba vacuums "needs to be controlled by the customer and not as a data asset of a corporation to exploit." iRobot CEO Colin Angle, Image via Reuters He went on to say that's how the company operates currently, and how it will continue to operate in the future. First things first, iRobot will never sell your data. Our mission is to help you keep a cleaner home and, in time, to help the smart home and the devices in it work better. Information that is shared needs to be controlled by the customer and not as a data asset of a corporation to exploit. That is how data is handled by iRobot today. Customers have control over sharing it. I want to make very clear that this is how data will be handled in the future. You may also want your robot to work with other connected devices in your home. For this to work, we will also require your permission, and we will always ensure secure means

iRobot Wants to Sell Mapping Data Collected by Roomba Vacuums to a Tech Company Like Apple

iRobot CEO Colin Angle today told Reuters that he hopes indoor mapping data collected by Roomba automatic vacuum cleaning machines can be sold to a company like Amazon, Apple, or Google in the near future. iRobot's latest line of 900-series Roomba vacuums use simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) technology to map rooms while they clean, memorizing room layout and the location of furniture. Angle believes that mapping data collected by the Roomba could be used to make other in-home smart devices like lighting, thermostats, and security cameras smarter. "There's an entire ecosystem of things and services that the smart home can deliver once you have a rich map of the home that the user has allowed to be shared," said Angle. Guy Hoffman, a robotics professor at Cornell University, told Reuters that the kind of spatial mapping technology iRobot can deliver has the potential to be a "major breakthrough" for smart homes.Right now, smart home devices operate "like a tourist in New York who never leaves the subway," said Hoffman. "There is some information about the city, but the tourist is missing a lot of context for what's happening outside of the stations."Angle believes that iRobot could reach a deal to sell its maps data to "one or more" of the "Big Three" (Amazon, Apple, and Google) in the next couple of years, but cheaper technology from competing companies and privacy concerns could potentially halt the company's plans. Angle says iRobot will not sell room data without customer permission, but he believes most people will give consent to access smart

Apple Expands Maps Transit Data to Additional Cities in Ohio

Apple is continuing to expand the availability of transit directions in the Maps app, today adding transit support in several cities in Ohio, including Cincinnati, Akron, Dayton, Canton, Athens, and some areas of Cleveland. Transit directions in these cities come following the introduction of transit information in Columbus, Ohio, which was added in September. Public transit options in Ohio encompass bus and light rail routes available in each city, including the Cleveland RTA, Cincinnati Bell Connector, Akron Metro, Dayton RTA, Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, the Stark Area Regional Transit Authority, and more. Apple first added transit directions to Maps in 2015, as part of iOS 9. At launch, transit information was only available in a small handful of cities around the world, but Apple has been working hard to expand the feature to additional locations. Transit data is now available in more than 30 cities, along with dozens of places in