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Robot Dogs In K12 & College Classroom - Spot Mini Vs Unitree Go2 Vs Petoi Bittle

Picture this: you're looking to introduce a quadruped or a four-legged robot to your STEM classroom for the next academic year. Not only will a programmable robot dog facilitate holistic robotics learning, but a popular quadruped will infuse fun and practical hands-on training for all the students as well. 

When it comes to choosing the right quadruped robot for your classroom, there are many robots that you could consider. Robot Dogs are one of the most popular for 3 main reasons:
  1. Dog movements are naturally understood and intuitive, even elementary school children have an idea of how the robot will move once programmed.
  2. Combining Robotics with animals is amusing and refreshing, especially for young students. Students love watching robot animals walk, run, flip and jump.
  3. Apart from casting a wide net for students of all ages from elementary schools all the way through high school, colleges and universities, Modern robot dogs are versatile. They can be programmed in multiple languages like Scratch, C++, & Python (to name a few).

Striking similarities between the movement of dogs and their robot counterparts:


Today we'll compare 3 of the top robot dogs for a classroom setting from K12 schools, all the way to middle schools, colleges & universities:

  • Spot Mini
  • Unitree Go2 Edu
  • Petoi Bittle

1. Spot Mini

boston dynamics spot mini robot dog

Robot Dimensions:

Length: 43.3 in; Width: 19.7 in
Height: while sitting - 7.5 in; while walking - 24 in
Weight: 70 lb (with battery) 

About the Robot

Spot Mini, developed by Boston Dynamics, is one of the most popular and advanced quadrupeds in the market. Known for its agility, distinct yellow color, and lifelike bionic movements making it a great option for teaching robotics in classrooms. Students are drawn to Spot Mini due to its versatility, namely in locomotion, object manipulation, and sensor integration, Spot Mini offers a comprehensive platform for exploring various aspects of robotics, from basic programming to advanced concepts in artificial intelligence and machine learning.

For Educators 

Educators leverage Spot Mini to inspire creativity and problem-solving skills in their students. By programming Spot Mini to navigate through obstacle courses, perform tasks, or interact with its environment, students gain practical experience in robotics and develop critical thinking abilities. 

Using Boston Dynamics' Spot Mini in classrooms presents some challenges such as high costs, technical support needs, and a learning curve for programming languages like Python, C++, or ROS.

One major drawback of using the Spot Mini in a classroom, especially with elementary students, is the safety concern where an out-of-control Spot Mini can cause physical harm to students. Its official terms and conditions state that “Spot is an amazing robot, but is not certified safe for in-home use or intended for use near children or others who may not appreciate the hazards associated with its operation."

Pricing

Possibly one of the major limitations of teaching robotics with the Spot Mini is the costs of the hardware and support.
The Spot Mini is retailed for $74,500. This makes individual learning a real challenge!  It's simply very difficult for schools and colleges to purchase a group of these robot dogs for a group of students.  The learning experience without running the setup costs in hundreds of thousands.  With a limited budget, a school may be forced to buy only a few Spot Mini robot dogs that are shared among many students.  If students somehow cause some damage to Spot Mini, the service costs can be really high.

2. Unitree Go2

Unitree Go2 robot dog

Robot Dimensions:

Length: 27 in; Width: 13 in
Height: while sitting - 7.5 in; while walking - 16 in
Weight: 33 lg (with battery) 

About the Robot

Developed by Unitree Robotics, The Unitree Go2 Edu Robot dog boasts of cutting-edge features. To give you an idea of how different these robot dogs are: The Unitree Go2 is equipped with a 4G e-sim card and WiFi & Bluetooth as well. These robot dogs are intelligent: coming with their own GPT and a unique 4D LiDAR L1 system developed to help the robot dog travel across multiple terrains as well.

For Educators

The Unitree Go2 Edu can be programmed in the coding langauge Python and is compatible with ROS ( Robot Operating System). Educators can pair the Unitree Go2 with Droneblocks' comprehensive robotics curriculum to deliver in-depth learning of STEM throughout the academic year. 

Just like the Spot Mini, The Unitree Go2 EDU is also compatible with a Servo Arm which extends its application with unique accessories that help students to dive deeper into robotic applications and real-world usage.

Pricing

The Unitree Go2 Pro Robot Dog with controller starts at $3050 with $399+ shipping and additional custom duties.

 

3. Petoi Bittle Robot Dog Family

three high school students playing with Bittle X robot dog

Robot Dimensions:

Length: 7.9 in; Width: 4.3 in
Height: 4.3 in
Weight: 265 g (with battery) 

About the Petoi Robot Dogs

Versatile, affordable, simple to use, and highly customizable, the Petoi Bittle Dog family contains quadruped robots for every level of STEM education. Petoi Bittle Robot Dog is a small-sized quadruped that packs a big punch.
Also available with voice control, motion sensing, light sensors, a camera, and multiple accessories along with the robot dog, Bittle makes learning and teaching fun, engaging, and affordable.


Designed with the classroom in mind, Petoi Bittle Robot Dog is the smallest quadruped on the list today and can fit in a palm. Students in classrooms all around the world are drawn to Bittle because of its unique size, ease of use, and functionality. Petoi Bittle is a great choice for robotics projects for kids and it is a great choice for AI project robots as well.

 

For Educators

Petoi Bittle is easier to teach as well with a comprehensive free robotics curriculum.
For instance, there are options to learn and teach programming depending on student level:

Another important point to note here is minimal maintenance and storage costs. Most Robot Dogs are bulky, and heavy and need constant maintenance because there is always the chance of the bigger accessories and screws, or parts falling off and getting damaged or going missing! Petoi's accessories and spare parts are readily available and shipped quickly.  That translates to more uptime for learning and fewer holds and technical difficulties while teaching.

For Students

Apart from the inclusive and free curriculum, Petoi Bittle Robot Dog is also safe to use for students and recommended for grade 4 or above(10 years old). 

Larger Robot Dogs (which are almost the size of an actual dog) could be hazardous, especially around children. Not only can they hurt students, but their industrial power and speed mean that most students don't interact with the robot directly!  Bittle is different: even elementary students can pick up a light Bittle right from the ground as it is very safe to operate.
Petoi's smart robots are designed to encourage inclusive and personal STEM learning, setting the Petoi Bittle apart from its competition.
Unlike other Robot Dogs which all the students of the class share, Petoi's smart robots are light, safe, and easy to maneuver. Learning by doing is one of the most practical ways of teaching, and Petoi Bittle's price and features mean that every student in the class can build and code their robot pet.

Bittle robot dogs can support a wide range of users, from total beginners to experienced coders. This makes Petoi the leading option for robots for science projects and robots for school projects. In the Petoi Robotics Challenge And Showcase Contests - Spring 2024, participants as long as 10-years-old designed Bittle to sing and dance with new movements



Graduate student Reid Graves from Carnegie Mellon University deployed an advanced real-time objection detection YOLO model on a Raspberry Pi on top of Bittle robotics kit to enable Bittle to collect acorns with AI.

 

Pricing

An open-source programmable and fun robot for students of all ages must be expensive, right? Not really! 
With Petoi Bittle, you can choose from 3 options:

Petoi Bittle Robot STEM Kit and Bittle Robotics Kit are built with NyBoard which makes them ideal for Arduino UNO-compatible projects. Fantastic for STEM education along with AI, IoT and robotics, these Bittle models can be bought fully assembled or in a construction package (DIY Robotics kit) (takes about 1 hour to assemble)
Bittle STEM Kit and Bittle X come with plastic servos while Bittle Robotics Kit comes with metal servos.

Petoi Bittle X is built on the BiBoard and it supports Arduino UNO-compatible projects along with ESP32 projects as well.
Bittle X also comes with 35+ inbuilt voice commands and 10 user-defined programmable voice commands. Starting at only $279 retail, Bittle X is a fantastic quadruped for academic curriculums.

Petoi's spare parts and accessories like servos, microcontrollers, sensors, etc are also easy to procure and much cheaper.  This greatly reduces the maintenance costs as well!

Most K12 schools, universities and colleges prefer purchasing 1 Petoi robot dog for every 1 to 3 students to encourage personalized learning and enable a practical, hands-on, and inclusive experience. 

Conclusion

If you're an educator on the lookout for a robot dog to take your STEM classroom to the next level or get students into robotics, we hope this blog article has been of value!
All in all, the affordable price, the depth of range, the free curriculum, and the expanded scope of learning for students of all ages make the Petoi Bittle the best quadruped robot out there.
For the price of 1 Spot Mini, you can get over 300 Petoi Bittle robot dogs with our exclusive Petoi school volume discount! 
Further, this means that you can design a robotics curriculum for your class that is accessible for all students, interactive, practical, and inexpensive! A curriculum where every student can build and code their own robot dog to participate in robotics competitions!

At Petoi, we prioritize robotics education and learning, In addition to offering a free robotics curriculum, we also provide exclusive training and assistance to educators along with robotics competition support. If you're looking to bring a Robot Dog into your classroom, click on the image below to get in touch with our team and we'd love to help!

Student programs bittle robot dog with block-based coding
Petoi's Bittle Robot Dogs are making quite the impression in classrooms around the world. Read about the following blog posts to learn more how Petoi robots are used in classrooms for robotics education:

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