Smartphone-powered robots launched for school students

Aim is to transform Pakistan into an engineering hub

Salman Siddiqui January 08, 2017

KARACHI: With a mission to transform Pakistan into a mainstream engineering hub from the current slow-paced progress, a group of four university graduates, mostly engineers, has launched smartphone-controlled robots for students at leading schools in the country.

“Some of the schools are to make our project part of their curriculum soon,” Shaheer Ahmed, Chief Executive Officer of Techtree startup, told The Express Tribune.

Three engineering graduates from the Sir Syed University of Engineering and Technology and an ACCA from the UK have produced robotic kits that attract children and young aged 7 to 20 years to assemble and play with the engineered products.

“We place the products in the category of engineering rather than in the category of toys,” he said.

“We chose the project of robots as they {robots) attract children learn sciences, technology, engineering, mathematics and innovations simultaneously,” he said.

“Our latest engineered products attract children to produce a morning alarm bell which rings with the catch of first rays of the sun, an indicator to check the water level in tank and radio from the educational robotic kits,” he said.

Other such engineered products in the pipeline are lights that are switched on as you speak, lights switching off automatically and a small platform to keep tea/coffee hot and soft drinks cold when attached with the laptop.

Prices of such products range from Rs1,000 to Rs1,500 each.

Earlier, they have produced goods in the range of Rs8,000 to Rs12,000 each. The products are like a spying robot, which follows a particular thing and person via feed of a programme in the smartphone App.

Another product has the capability to move an object weighing up to 500 grammes.

Students at some of the schools do practical of their engineered robots after taking lectures delivered by the project founders. “We teach and encourage students to do practice at the Foundation Public School, Beaconhouse System School, PECHS and Dawood Public School,” he said.

“Education is the basic of everything and that’s why we have decided to launch our project at the educational institutions.

“A literate English-speaking child may assemble our products with the help of diagrams provided along with them. We will soon launch such Apps in Urdu language,” he said.

The students, who graduated from the Nest I/O tech incubator in November 2016, are expected to commercially launch their educational robotic kits by the end of this month. At present, they are doing packaging of the products.

He said he was going to meet two of the known industrialists for financing to make their project commercially viable.

The writer is a staff correspondent

Published in The Express Tribune, January 9th, 2017.

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