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Robots are going to kill us all, right? Well, not Zenbo. ASUS is marketing its new home robot as a life companion that doubles up as a personal assistant, metal pet and a walking-talking tablet.
“For decades, humans have dreamed of owning such a companion: one that is smart, dear to our hearts, and always at our disposal. Our ambition is to enable robotic computing for every household,” ASUS’s chairman Jonney Shih explains.
Zenbo is the company’s realisation of this idea, complete with anime eyes and an annoying Alvin the Chipmunk voice.
Standing about as tall as a golden retriever, Zenbo rolls around independently and intelligently, and boasts a camera, speakers and what seems to be a decent level of AI to boot.
Users can play music, buy shoes, watch movies and follow recipes simply by commanding the robot. Zenbo can also notify the users, be commanded into different areas of the house, or even notify users if a member of their family is in harm.
“With a full range of capabilities, including the ability to move independently and understand spoken commands, Zenbo can assist in the home and interacting with him is easy and fun,” the company explains.
ASUS hasn’t give much details on the device’s specs, intelligence system, processing power, or the like, but the Developer Program is currently free to join. The robot however, isn’t.
ASUS suggests that the Zenbo will cost US$599 at launch.
For a better understanding of what ASUS sees as the future of robotics and the smart home, have a look at the video below.