iPad robot helps hospitalized girl graduate with classmates

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iPad robot helps teen attend her high school graduation.
An iPad graduated from high school... no wait, a high school girl graduated via iPad.
Screencap: CBS News

When a high school girl couldn’t attend her high school graduation, a iPad-based robot allowed her to virtually collect her diploma.

Cynthia Pettway was hospitalized last week, but the iPad on wheels filled in for her, even wearing a graduation cap and gown.

The iPad robot was loaned to her by USA Children’s and Women’s Hospital in Mobile AL, where she’s a patient. The device is controlled by a second iPad, and the hospital uses it to enable bed-ridden patients to virtually move around the building.

In this case, it went father afield, attending the Leflore High School graduation this week. Pettway controlled it over the Internet, and could see and be seen by her classmates and teachers.

“I had to walk that stage. And I rolled across that stage,” Pettway told CBS affiliate WKRG.

Telepresence iPad robots on the roll

Double Robots made Pettway’s “iPad on a stick.” It’s been producing these telepresence robots since 2013. One was used by a woman who made herself famous by waiting in line to buy an iPhone 7 with it back in 2016.

The company’s latest offering, the Double 2, doesn’t actually come with a 9.7-inch iPad, but that’s the only tablet it works with. It’s available now for $3000 on the company’s web site.