SOURCE: GeckoSystems Intl. Corp.

February 15, 2011 00:05 ET

GeckoSystems' Mobile Robot Solutions Satisfy Significant Need for "Collision Proof" Wheelchairs

CONYERS, CA--(Marketwire - February 15, 2011) - GeckoSystems Intl. Corp. (PINKSHEETS: GOSY), a dynamic leader in the development and usage of "Mobile Robot Solutions for Safety, Security and Service"™ for the emerging mobile robotics industry, announced today that development of its GeckoNav™ Wheelchair Kit upgrade for power wheelchairs may have dramatic benefits for many primary caregivers and their elderly parents in assisted care facilities.

Recent Delphi methodology market research has revealed that assisted care facilities, due to liability insurance concerns, require its elderly patrons to promptly relocate at such time when their wheelchairs damage walls, furniture, and/or other persons in their facility due to poor, inadequate control. A typical power wheelchair and occupant together weigh approximately 200-350 pounds, and if badly controlled, can readily inflict traumatic physical damage to themselves and/or others in the assisted care living facility. 

GeckoSystems has learned that the management at many assisted care facilities must address the harsh reality of immediate relocation. When moving an elderly care receiver to a facility capable of managing a new, higher level of care giving, the primary caregiver now has to manage not only the emotional cost of the move (further loss of independence, dignity for their parents, spouse, etc.), but the burden of a dramatic increase in the monthly monetary cost of providing safety and security for their elderly loved one.

In the foregoing scenario, upgrading with GeckoSystems' new GeckoNav™ Wheelchair Kit (GWK001), would forestall that forced relocation and its implicit emotional trauma, while paying for itself in only 2-3 months. This is a very significant market with a critically needed solution. The recent invention of the GeckoImager™ -- in unison with their many proprietary mobile robot solutions -- enables the company to cost effectively provide kits to retrofit and upgrade electric wheelchairs to be "collision proof."

"The 'collision proof' retrofit kit we are presently developing may be added to most joystick operated electric wheelchairs. The wheelchair occupant would simply move the joystick in the direction they wish to go and GeckoNav™ -- in concert with multiple GeckoSavants™ -- would automatically seek that desired direction while avoiding any and all obstacles whether stationary or moving," said GeckoSystems President/CEO Martin Spencer. "We expect the cost to the end user, completely installed, to be only a few thousand dollars for this heightened level of safety for not only the occupant of the wheelchair, but also those persons around them."

GeckoSystems recently announced that GeckoImager™ uses sensor fusion incorporating structured light machine vision and sonar range finding to compliment GeckoOrient's™ solid-state compass, accelerometer and odometry sensor fusion. This provides its automatic, self-navigation artificial intelligence (AI) software, GeckoNav™, with sufficient and timely data to achieve actionable situation awareness while providing a very safe, loose crowd level of autonomy to be "collision proof."

"The amount of data that the new GeckoImager provides is far greater than what can reasonably be collected with fixed sensors and at a much lower cost than scanning laser range finding systems that are frequently used," said Kevin O'Connor, Sr. EE Roboticist, Research and Development, GeckoSystems.

"Our new GeckoImager™ sensor fusion system not only provides timely and actionable situation awareness information sufficient for our AI navigation software, GeckoNav™, it also simultaneously satisfies those requirements at a much lower cost, in both dollars and power."

Presently, the company is continuing its market research for this business-to-business (B2B) market place using the Delphi Method. As previously announced, the recent sensor fusion breakthrough of the GeckoImager may enable some near term B2B niche retrofit markets. Potential sales forecasts for this B2B market are being developed as manufacturing costs and market size become more clearly understood.

"During the past year, our world's first in home elder care robot trials have garnered many inquiries regarding our business model, technologies available for licensing and interest in joint domestic and international ventures," said Spencer. "Our GeckoImager™ breakthrough enables some near-term B2B niche retrofit markets such as a 'collision proof' electric wheelchair. While we continue to expect technology-licensing revenues to precede revenues levels from product manufacturing and sales, this new B2B opportunity will be carefully reviewed for near-term benefits. This augurs well for increased ROI and shareholder value for our nearly 1,400 investors."

Interested manufacturers, distributors, and/or dealers inquiries welcomed at 1-866-CAREBOT (227-3268)

About GeckoSystems International Corporation:

Since 1997, GeckoSystems has developed a comprehensive, coherent and sufficient suite of hardware and software inventions to enable a new type of home appliance (a personal companion robot) the CareBot™, to be created for the mass consumer marketplace. The suite of primary inventions includes: GeckoNav™, GeckoChat™ and GeckoTrak™.

The primary market for this product is the family for use in eldercare, care for the chronically ill and childcare. The primary distribution channel for this new home appliance is the thousands of independent personal computer retailers in the U.S. The manufacturing infrastructure for this new product category of mobile service robots is essentially the same as the personal computer industry. Several outside contract manufacturers have been identified and qualified their ability to produce up to 1,000 CareBots per month within four to six months.

By the end of this year, the Company plans to complete productization of its CareBot™ offering with the introduction of its fourth generation personal robot, the CareBot™ 4.0 MSR. The Company expects to be the first personal robot developer and manufacturer in the world to begin in-home eldercare evaluation trials.

The present senior management at GeckoSystems has more than 35 years experience in consumer electronics sales and marketing, and product development. Senior managers have been identified for the areas of manufacturing, marketing, sales, and finance.

About the CareBot™ MSR:

The CareBot™ has proven to be ideal for the Consumer Family care market (care for children and the elderly) which has been chronicled in articles from Psychology Today (www.psychologytoday.com/blog/adventures-in-old-age/200906/the-robots-have-dawned-meet-the-carebot) and subject-related blogs (http://cgmasi.com/eyeontechnology/2009/06/personal-robots-to-monitor-elderly-vital-signs.html). In this market, MSRs serve as a cost effective alternative to nursing assistance or assistance living residency. The estimated savings total can exceed tens of thousands of dollars.

The CareBot™ MSR monitors the care receiver on site and enables the caregiver an onsite visual and auditory presence to better watch over and assist their needs. It is capable of conducting "Virtual Visits" allowing the parents to view their children, or adult children to monitor their frail parents from any location with Internet access. CareBots also serve as automatic reminders informing care receivers of appointments, visitors (invited and/or unexpected) and other events (i.e. taking medications, watching television programs).

Like an automobile, mobile robots are made from steel, aluminum, plastic, and electronics, but with ten to twenty times the amount of software running. The CareBot has an aluminum frame, plastic shroud, two independently driven wheels, multiple sensor systems, microprocessors and several onboard computers connected in a local area network (LAN). The microprocessors directly interact with the sensor systems and transmit data to the onboard computers. The onboard computers each run independent, highly specialized cooperative/subsumptive artificial intelligence (AI) software programs, GeckoSavants, which interact to complete tasks in a timely, intelligent and common sense manner. GeckoSuper, GeckoNav, GeckoChat, GeckoScheduler and GeckoTrak are primary, high level GeckoSavants. GeckoNav is responsible for maneuvering, avoiding dynamic and/or static obstacles, seeking waypoints and patrolling. GeckoChat is responsible for interaction with the care-receiver such as answering questions, assisting with daily routines and reminders, and responding to other verbal commands. GeckoTrak, which is mostly transparent to the user, enables the CareBot to maintain proximity to the care-receiver using sensor fusion. The CareBot is a new type of Internet appliance, a personal assistant robot, that is accessible for remote video/audio monitoring and telepresence.

Research
At the time of founding, over 12 years ago, GeckoSystems did extensive primary market research to determine the demographic profile of the early adopters of the then proposed product line. Subsequent to, and based on that original market research, they have assembled numerous focus groups to evaluate the fit of the CareBot™ personal robot into the participant's lives and their expected usage. The Company has also frequently employed the Delphi market research methodology by contacting and interviewing senior executives, practitioners and researchers knowledgeable in the area of elder care. Using this factual basis of internally performed primary and secondary market research, and third-party research is the statistical substance for the Company's sales forecasts.

Not surprisingly, the scientific statistical analysis applied revealed that elderly over 65 living alone in metropolitan areas with broadband Internet available and sufficient household incomes to support the increased costs were identified as those most likely to adopt initially. Due to the high cost of assisted living, nursing homes, etc. the payback for a CareBot™ is expected to be only seven to nine months while keeping elderly care receivers independent, in their own long time homes, and living longer due to the comfort and safety of more frequent attention from their loved ones.

The Projected Consumer Market Size In Dollars For Cost Effective, Utilitarian, Multitasking Eldercare Personal Robots:

Year   Market Size
2011   $74.0 billion
2012   $77.0 billion
2013   $80.0 billion
2014   $83.3 billion
2015   $86.6 billion

Estimated Market Penetrations and Projected Sales:

Year   Percentage   Projected Sales
2012   0.06%   $22 million
2013   0.03%   $44 million
2014   0.22%   $176 million
2015   0.53%   $440.2 million
2016   0.81%   $704.3 million

Source: U.S. Census Bureau; GeckoSystems Intl. Corp.

The Company expects these sales despite -- and perhaps because of -- the past recession due to pent up demand for significant cost reduction in eldercare expenses. The foregoing forecasts do not include sales in non-metropolitan areas; elderly couples over 65 (only elderly living alone are in these forecasts); those chronically ill -- regardless of age -- or elderly living with their adult children.

The Company's "mobile robot solutions for safety, security and service™" are appropriate not only for the consumer, but also professional healthcare, commercial security and defense markets. Professional healthcare require cost effective, timely errand running, portable telemedicine, etc. Homeland Security requires cost effective mobile robots to patrol and monitor public venues for weapons and WMD detection. Military users desire the elimination of the "man in the loop" to enable unmanned ground and air vehicles to not require constant human control and/or intervention.

Safe Harbor:
Statements regarding financial matters in this press release other than historical facts are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and as that term is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company intends that such statements about the Company's future expectations, including future revenues and earnings, technology efficacy and all other forward-looking statements be subject to the Safe Harbors created thereby. The Company is a development stage firm that continues to be dependent upon outside capital to sustain its existence. Since these statements (future operational results and sales) involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, the Company's actual results may differ materially from expected results.

Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=140182685996116&v=wall

YouTube:
Kinect Enabled Personal Robot
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kn93BS44Das

Elder Care Robot Trial Video 2, Stationary View
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=smUNls4LJtY&feature=player_embedded#at=16

One CareBot™ One Family
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxK46chfP6A&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL

Mobile Robot Navigates Dining Room & Kitchen
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_jd9_0W9mE&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL

Contact Information

  • GeckoSystems Intl. Corp.
    Telephone:
    Main number: 1-866-CAREBOT (227-3268)
    International: +1 678-413-9236
    Fax: +1 678-413-9247