Smart Home

9 great reads from CNET this week: Amazon Astro, James Bond, robocalls and more

Hands down, the attention-grabbing tech of the week was Amazon’s Astro, a diminutive rolling robot with cartoon eyes, a camera on a periscope and a mission to follow strangers in the household. The $1,000 smart home gadget will be available at first to just a small coterie of invite-only buyers, but it’s already occupying brain space far and wide.

There are lots of ways to think about Astro. It’s a convenience and a cool little plaything. It’s a privacy and surveillance nightmare waiting to happen. It’s Amazon’s Trojan horse for getting more and more of its products into your home. Soon enough we’ll know if it’s a keeper like the Roomba or a flash in the pan like Sony’s Aibo.

Our stories on Astro and everything else Amazon announced are among the many in-depth features and thought-provoking commentaries that appeared on CNET this week. So here you go. These are the stories you don’t want to miss:

Amazon’s Astro is the ultimate test for whether we really need home robots

Following Amazon’s scene-stealing home robot unveiling, the big question is whether it can succeed where others have failed.

Amazon's Astro robot Amazon Criticizing Amazon might be a losing battle, but it’s one worth fighting

Commentary: Amazon understands that it’s more important to be popular than to be good. The Astro robot proves it.

Amazon Astro robot Amazon No Time To Die review: Daniel Craig’s James Bond goes out with a bang

James Bond finally gets a life in this epic, explosive and emotional farewell to the longest-serving 007.

Daniel Craig as James Bond MGM/Universal FCC is laser-focused on erasing the digital divide and crushing robocalls

Acting Chair Jessica Rosenworcel tells CNET she’s hopeful that the FCC can solve these big problems.

Acting Federal Communication Commission Chair Jessica Rosenworcel Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images Trucking in America: 5 fascinating truths about how your stuff gets to you

Being a trucker is dangerous, difficult and in demand as e-commerce continues to surge. Trucking is also undergoing major technological changes.

Tractor trailer trucks Getty Images Suicide and self-harm content is scarily easy to find on social media

Instagram and other social media sites are accused of not doing enough to protect the mental health of teens and young adults.

Young person with head bowed down Getty Images Horn in the USA: Building better brass instruments, one part at a time

At S.E. Shires, craftspeople work hard to create horns that fit their players exactly right.

Joseph Alessi, principal trombone player of the New York Philharmonic Courtesy of S.E. Shires Company One pair of jeans, 365 days: Why I’ve worn the same pair of pants for a year straight

The Indigo Invitational elevated me from a denim fan into a full-time “fader” and connected me to my past — and the world.

Amanda Kooser in raw-denim jeans Waz Abbott COP26: The biggest climate change conference in the world and why it matters

Over 190 nations will come together in Glasgow this November to address the climate crisis.

Protestors march in Dusseldorf, Germany, during the September 2021 climate strike Lukas Schulze/Getty

Now playing: Watch this: Amazon’s Astro robot is part home helper, part surveillance…



Donovan Larsen

Donovan is a columnist and associate editor at the Dark News. He has written on everything from the politics to diversity issues in the workplace.

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