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Visit to Kingxchip in Shenzhen - JoyBee K2 in action

Kickstarter campaign for the JoyBee K2

I can't deny that I'm interested in innovations and sustainable technologies. On the contrary: inventions that simplify and automate everyday life inspire me! For example, I have recently been increasingly involved with robots - both Robot vacuum cleaner for the interior as well as intelligent robotic lawn mowers. The robotic mower business in particular is dynamic and new developments are flooding onto the market. I was particularly impressed by the JoyBee K2, which I have already reported on here. This was presented in November in a Kickstarter campaign and was among others at the CES 2024 in Las Vegas to see.

We are expanding from indoor robotic vacuum cleaners to outdoor robotic lawn mowers.

Dr. Fan Ling, Co-Founder and CTO at Kingxchip and JoyBee

Kickstarter campaigns can be successful - the best example of robotic lawnmowers is the Mammotion Luba. But they don't have to, as the example of the Heisenberg H1 Pro shows. Every Kickstarter campaign involves a certain amount of risk - for the investor, the amount of money invested, and for the company, a loss of reputation. To talk about the current status of the JoyBee K2 robotic lawnmower, I made an appointment with Dr. Fan Ling (co-founder and CTO at Kingxchip and JoyBee) in Shenzhen and report in this post on the latest developments on the - so much I can already say - promising project.

Impressions of the JoyBee K2 robotic lawnmower

The photos I took come directly from Kingxchip in Shenzhen on March 13, 2024 and do not necessarily show the final product version, as prototypes are used for development:

According to Dr. Fan Ling, the choice of materials has also been improved during development, making it even more robust.

Interview with Dr. Fan Ling at Kingxchip (JoyBee) in Shenzhen

In my Interview in Shenzhen with Dr. Fan Ling on March 13, 2024 I received the following exciting information, which I would like to share with you - in consultation with the person I spoke to.

Dr. Fan Ling is a true technology enthusiast who pursues high standards and has already gained many years of valuable professional experience, including at the internationally renowned semiconductor manufacturer Qualcomm. Dr. Fan Ling lived and studied in the USA for 20 years. For him, the mantra "quality before sales" clearly applies. He stands behind his company and wants to deliver high-quality products. This brings us to the following key statements that I took away with me:

  • JoyBee has been a Kingxchip brand since 2019, just like Tesvor is already an established brand for robotic vacuum cleaners. Kingxchip positions JoyBee as a premium and high-quality brand for robotic lawnmowers and would like to expand internationally with a focus on the USA and Europe.
  • The JoyBee K2 is supplied with a stable software version from Delivered at the beginning of April 2024so that the promise of the Kickstarter campaign is kept.
  • The Software version for delivery will not yet include all the functions that JoyBee envisions (but all those promised in the Kickstarter campaign). The JoyBee K2 will be continuously supplied with further Over-The-Air (OTA) updates. The update process has already been tried and tested with vacuum robots.
  • An example for future Software updatesInitially, green markers are required for the VSLAM function and the JoyBee K2 will only refer to the markers with the VSLAM function in order to be able to navigate reliably when the RTK signal (GPS signal) is poor. In a subsequent update, the surroundings (plants, trees, houses, sheds, etc.) will also be included. However, this is not trivial, according to Dr. Fan Ling, as the environment can change regularly and naturally changes greatly with the seasons. He describes this as a significant advantage over the Worx Landroid Vision and partly the Mammotion Luba 2who will not always have it easy.
  • I also asked the CTO about the Mower disc of the JoyBee K2, which only has one. Here, Mammotion has achieved a unique selling point with the Luba series with two mower discs. Dr. Fan Ling explains that this was a hotly debated issue within the team. In the end, the decision was made to have just one mowing disk for safety reasons.
  • There is also exciting news for future developments: Kingxchip is considering a JoyBee K1 which is optimized for gardens with < 300m² and is based purely on VSLAM, i.e. operates without RTK (GPS) and can therefore be offered at low cost. The company is also considering a JoyBee K3 which is optimized for particularly large gardens with > 2,000m². This is expected to be technically identical to the JoyBee K2; only the base station will be equipped with an automatic, mechanical battery replacement mechanism (this patented process has already been developed). However, the company is currently concentrating on delivering the JoyBee K2 on schedule and ensuring the best possible quality.
  • Theoretically, it is therefore also it is possible to change the battery in the JoyBee K2as I was also told in a Kickstarter campaign comment confirmed was developed. However, this feature will probably not make it into the first software release.

Advantages of the JoyBee K2 robotic lawnmower

Which elements particularly inspired me during my visit?

  • Kingxchip is an experienced company that is not developing a product for the first time. With over 600 employees and a broad portfolio of robots (robot vacuum cleaners, pool robots and now also robot mowers), the company is well positioned for the future.
  • Kingxchip's robots sell well - either through brands such as Tesvor (Tesvor on Amazon with very good reviews), but in particular as white label OEM devices. This means that Kingxchip produces the devices and prints another company's logo on them.
  • The JoyBee K2 itself is a robot that works with RTK + VSLAM combines two technologies that uniquely complement each other. Kingxchip has already had positive experiences with VSLAM through robotic vacuum cleaners. In my previous article I report more about Technical advantages of the JoyBee K2 robotic lawnmower.
  • The robotic lawnmower is IPX6-certified waterproofso that it is easy to clean with a garden hose (Video about it).
  • Kingxchip cooperates worldwide, including in Germany (Würzburg), with service centersso that - unlike start-ups - repair measures and the availability of spare parts should also be guaranteed. The company offers everything from a single source and therefore also has more control over supply chains.

Overall, I am impressed by the company, their vision and the JoyBee K2 robotic lawnmower in particular. For me, the project is very promising and I will report back here when the JoyBee K2 is in my garden - including a video!

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