Nicobo is a cat-like playful robot that looks like a cartoon character.
Panasonic “Nicobo” is a robot pet jointly developed with robotics researchers in the Michio Oka Laboratory of Toyohashi Institute of Technology. The cartoon-style cat-like robot has a circular design and can react according to the user’s reaction. Robot pets are true interactive robots designed to entertain people without the need for real pets. Nicobo can’t walk curiously like other pets, but it can move left and right or up and down in a specific position on the abdomen. To get more interactive behavior, Nicobo is equipped with a touch sensor to let it know when to touch or hug it. The robot pet also has a multi-directional microphone that can recognize your voice; a camera for facial recognition. There is also a light sensor that allows it to navigate in the sun.
Panasonic “Nicobo” is now available for purchase in Japan, but it is limited to 320 units, each priced at $360. If successful, the robot can be mass-produced to provide consumers with a unique and comfortable way to accompany them. (via)