Heartland Robotics is announcing a big new funding round today — $30 million — and changing its name in advance of its first product launch. The Boston company will now be known as Rethink Robotics.
To go with the new name, they’ve revamped their website. But it still doesn’t include product images or even a vague description of what their first product will be.
Founder Rodney Brooks, the former MIT prof who also helped get iRobot off the ground, has only said the company wants to introduce robots to manufacturing environments where they haven’t been used previously, and help make American manufacturing more cost-competitive globally.
Back in November 2010, I collected all the scuttlebut I could about what the company is up to. Sources back then said the company was developing an inexpensive bot that would be easily trained to do repetitive tasks, and would be safe working around humans. Brooks has apparently likened Rethink’s product to Apple’s iPhone, meaning it’d be intuitive to use, and that the company will try to create a community of developers who’d write software for it.
(To read the rest of this story on the Innovation Economy blog, please click here.)