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Canonical launches new ‘#InternetOfToys’ initiative with partners

This article was last updated 4 years ago.

  • IoT World: Hybrid, Erle and Canonical combine to commercialize IoT dev

  • ROSCon: Canonical demonstrates power of apps on robots; shows Erle Spider

  • Mark Shuttleworth keynote at ROSCon: secrets to ROS success


Canonical is taking its Internet of Things (IoT) innovation on tour over the few days; bringing a host of new developments to the European market to show the emerging commercial opportunities surrounding IoT and robotics.

At ROSCon in Hamburg (3 – 4 Oct, 2015) and IoT World Europe in Berlin (5 – 7 Oct, 2015), Canonical will demonstrate the latest in robotics and drone technology, showing the power of apps on smart devices and launching a brand new ‘Internet of Toys’ initiative for the ‘maker’ and toy industries.

ROScon, Hamburg, 3 – 4 October

At this year’s ROSCon, taking place 3 – 4 October in Hamburg, Canonical is demonstrating how powerful apps can be integrated with robotics. The Canonical booth (#13) will play host to an array of IoT demonstrations, showing how the robotics and ‘things’ industries have gained significant ground over the last twelve months.

One of the key demos on show is Erle-spider, the app-enabled spider, demonstrating  the power of apps on robots. It is the first legged drone powered by ROS and running ‘snappy’ Ubuntu Core. This smart robot with a 900 MHz quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 processor runs Linux natively and embeds several sensors onboard. The hexapod has been designed to meet the increasing demand of robot kits to learn, research and develop while being subject to low levels of regulation.

Maarten Ectors, VP IoT at Canonical said: “Apps on the Erle-spider personalise what and how you use your robot. Come and see how our spider becomes a real-time journalist and streams everything it sees to Youtube Live Events and listens to Twitter for instructions. One of the many ways makers can easily personalise a device with apps.”

Mark Shuttleworth keynote

The event will also be marked by a keynote from Mark Shuttleworth, Founder of Canonical and the Ubuntu brand. In his keynote (3 Oct 9.10am, Main Hall), Mark Shuttleworth will speak to the ways the platform itself supports commercialisation of new ROS products. Canonical has reshaped the platform specifically to meet the needs of inventors taking their products to market – creating “snappy” Ubuntu Core as a product-centric flavour of the popular Ubuntu OS. Mark will share the goals of that work and the current roadmap for Ubuntu Core, based on conversations with existing device-oriented developers.

Don’t miss a moment: LiveStream Link

This year, a livestream will be made freely available so you can see the best of ROSCon online. Don’t forget to follow @Ubuntu on twitter for updates on the Livestream.

IoT World Europe, Berlin, 5 – 7 October

At this year’s IoT World, taking place 5 – 7 October in Berlin, Canonical (Stand #3) is demonstrating the commercial value of IoT technology by partnering with two of the most innovative robotics companies around today.

Hybrid Group, Erle Robotics and Canonical  will launch “The Internet of Toys”: an open source initiative that invites toy makers, hackers, IoT lovers and innovators to join us to build the next generation of toys around open source tools like Cyclon.Js, Gobot, Snappy Ubuntu Core, Snapcraft, ROS, Erle-Drones, Erle-Spiders, etc.

Ron Evans, Ringleader at The Hybrid Group said of the initiative:

“The Hybrid Group wants makers to have a great time when working with cool gadgets and devices. The Internet of Toys takes ‘easiness’ and ‘fun’ to the next level.”

Victor Mayoral, CTO at Erle Robotics commented: “Robots and drones are complex machines. We want any programmer to be able to control and personalize them easily and any consumer should be able to put apps on them. We hope to make this a ‘snappy’ reality soon.”

“Why does IoT have to be boring? Let’s make IoT fun. Open Source will help anybody to participate, connect and personalise toys with apps. Everybody is welcome to join us.” said Maarten Ectors, VP of IoT at Canonical.

Beyond ‘’Internet of Toys’’ Canonical will be showing a host of other partner demos from the likes of Cloudplugs, Cumulocity, Guh, M2MLabs, Dataart/DeviceHive, etc. They’ll be on hand to show the ease of integration for any type of hardware (devices, sensors, actuators) and the application of standards from the IoT domain( AllJoyn, SCADA, MODBUS, PLC, Bluetooth). There will also be demos around the the ease by which developers can integrate complex cloud, big data and IoT solutions into any app.

Picture: Ron from Hybrid Group mounting a laser canon they designed on top of a Sphero Ollie as an early prototype for Internet of Toys.

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