I created a company Panasonic is partnering with robotics researchers from Toyohashi University of Technology’s Michio Oka Laboratory Nicobo robot, which has many of the features you would expect from such a device.
The Nicobo robot can recognize faces with its camera, hear your voice and respond to it through its directional microphones, and includes touch sensors, so it knows when you touch or hug it.
The robot also has some strange features, as it is prone to attacks of flatulence and has a bad mood, so there are days when it may not respond very much.
Sometimes the talking robot starts without you, and don’t expect it to follow you around the room either, since Nicobo is not moving and its only motor abilities are centered around turning, shaking its head and tail, and looking up and down.
Nicobo has a limited vocabulary, and he knows only one word at first, but is eventually able to speak complete Japanese sentences in a similar way to a young child.
Buying the robot in the near future will not be easy, as Panasonic plans to manufacture only 320 robots in the initial production process, and they have been sold through initial orders via platform Crowdfunding in about six hours.
Panasonic expects to deliver the robot to customers in March 2022, and the company is selling Nicobo for about $ 360.
After the first six months, those lucky enough to secure an initial request will need to pay about $ 10 a month for features like: smartphone pairing and updates.
And there is the possibility that Panasonic will ramp up production and manufacture more Nicobo robots if there is enough interest.