• Earlier this week, we confirmed that the Rabbit R1 — a standalone AI gadget that’s been receiving poor reviews all around — runs on Android.
  • The entire interface that users interact with on the R1 is powered by an Android app that we demonstrated can run on existing Android phones.
  • Rabbit issued a statement saying that their AI services can only be accessed on the R1 with its “very bespoke AOSP” firmware, but that isn’t true.

The Rabbit R1 fell flat on its face this week when it launched to scathing reviews across the board. Instead of living up to the hype from its CES 2024 announcement, the standalone AI gadget instead somehow managed to garner even worse reviews than the significantly more expensive Humane AI Pin. What ended up souring a lot of people’s opinions on the product was the revelation — in an Android Authority original report — that the R1 is basically an Android app in a box. Many consumers who believed that the product would be better suited as a mobile app felt validated after our report, but there was one stickler in it that we needed to address: how we got the R1 launcher up and running on an Android phone.

See, in our preliminary report, we mentioned that the Rabbit R1’s launcher app is intended to be preinstalled in the firmware and be granted several privileged, system-level permissions. While that statement is still true, we should’ve clarified that the R1 launcher doesn’t actually need those permissions. In fact, none of the system-level permissions that the R1 launcher requests are at all necessary for the app to perform its core functionality.