In all honesty, this sounded horrifying at first. A robot with feelings? Hasn’t anyone seen Artificial Intelligence? But after some research, Pepper the robot – Japan’s latest hi-tech invention – actually seems kinda neat.
One thousand models of the world’s first emotional robot were released in Japan for $1,600 USD this past Saturday, and sold out within minutes. Softbank Robotics Corp.’s Pepper, a talking and moving robot that experiences human feelings, stands at four-foot-zero and weighs 61 pounds, equivalent of a second-grader.
According to their website, “Pepper is the first humanoid robot designed to live with humans … Pepper is a social robot able to converse with you, recognize and react to your emotions, move and live autonomously.”
Pepper comes equipped with a multitude of sensory spots and cameras that allow it to see and feel what you’re feeling and then respond accordingly. Pepper is also built with an accelerometer that detects the speed of an object or person around it, so it can move with it. This robot can also collect data from its surroundings reacts to them, just as a human would. Sadly, Pepper can’t do the dishes. (Robots are friends, not servants.)
Just like any manmade object, Pepper can and will make mistakes. The cool part about it is that along with his other experiences, Pepper stores its errors in a data cloud that is apart of the built-in network, and then tries to correct them in future situations.
Speaking of networks, Pepper has its very own app store. Not much information has been released on the nature of the apps, but we do know that there will be language-based software released over the next few months. Currently, Pepper can speak English, French, Japanese, and Spanish.
Does an emotionally savvy robo-pal like Pepper sound intriguing? Softbank is looking to release more next month in July, so get your bank accounts ready. Just cross your fingers they don’t take over the world.
Would you get a Pepper of your own? Let Vv Magazine know in the comments below, or tweet us @ViewtheVibe.