Geeks, get ready to talk with this new toddler-sized robot that can hold a conversation in 19 different languages. The robot is built by Paris-based robotics company Aldebaran basically designed for companionship.
Having a voice that doesn’t sound much older than it looks, the robot is infused with language-learning software developed by Voice-technology company Nuance. It can walk, brace itself if it falls and can develop its own personality as it gets better at speaking through repetition. According to reports, Aldebaran‘s head of communications Marine Fabrea said, “He lives his life on your side at home. You can discuss with him, you can ask him to tell a story to your kids.”
Nuance’s Vice President and General Manager of Automotives Arnd Weil said that the difference between mindless machines and these robots is the latter’s built-in emotional intelligence. “What they are trying to do with the robot is mainly capturing what is the mood of that other person,” he said. “It’s more like somebody’s coming home and he had a bad day, he’s angry, so the robot should capture that … and react accordingly.”
The robot will have to access a cloud of data that builds its vocabulary and to help it understand the flow of conversation. The more users interact, the better this robot react and converse. Further, the robots are foreseen to be bringing out drinks, chatting with people who are waiting for appointments, acting as highly functional pets, and providing companionship to the elderly or children with disabilities.
The robots are expected to be available next year but pricing has yet to be revealed.