Products of the Groove X Company are capable of navigating things around, identifying owners and demanding hug.
Appeared at the Consumer Electronics Show – CES 2019 (taking place in Las Vegas, USA from January 9-12) – Lovot robot attracted special attention to visitors with a lovely look, a hybrid between a bird penguin, owl, and teddy bear. When held, the robot feels limp, like a living organism. But if it is swung in hand like a lullaby, the robot will close its eyes and go to sleep. It has been described as capable of alleviating human loneliness.
Lovot is also on the list of the best CES products by Engadget technology magazine and won the Best Robot of CES 2019 by The Verge.
“Not every robot needs to save the world. Lovot appears to make you feel better in front of a bad world,” commented Engadget.
Lovot robots with the words Best of CES 2019 voted by Engadget.
Lovot is the product of a startup based in Tokyo, Japan – Groove X. Kaname Hayashi, founder and CEO of the company admits, his robot does not replace humans to do any work nor does for entertainment purposes. But it has the ability to create strong emotions for customers and they naturally have a desire to treat it like a child or a pet.
“The things Lovot can do is just recognize the owner and act with them. But through that, I want to give people the opportunity to be loved,” Hayashi said about the purpose of creating a robot.
Formerly working in the auto industry, Hayashi joined the development team of Pepper – a robot that is said to have the ability to recognize human emotions of SoftBank Company, which attracted attention when selling 1,000 products in the market. one-minute offering. It was here that he realized that robots have the ability to touch people’s emotional and psychological needs. Before that, it had mostly only appeared in science fiction.
Hayashi believes that this ability of machines can contribute to solving the problem of the increasing social costs of loneliness. In 2018, the UK appointed the world’s first Loneliness Minister in front of the estate of more than 9 million people in this country who always or often feel lonely and about 200,000 elderly people do not talk to a friend or relative. one month. A recent survey by the American Pension Association (AARP) found that loneliness among people 65 years and older has caused the US government to add nearly $ 7 billion in medical expenses each year. In Japan, where single people are expected to account for nearly 40% of all households by 2040, isolation is also becoming an epidemic in society.
“Our instincts are formed when people live together in caves. But the modern working style creates too much loneliness and the desire for empathy is not being satisfied. This vacancy is the reason dogs.” and cats became necessary But not everyone can own a pet Technology will take over. Above all else, people can love an antique car, then why can’t they love one robot? “, Hayashi assessed.
Mr. Kaname Hayashi is the founder and CEO of Groove X.
Launched with venture capital funding in 2015, it took Groove X about 4 years and $ 52 million to perfect the development of Lovot. Hayashi’s first difficulty developing Lovot was designing the robot’s appearance. He said he could not find possible hints from Japanese sci-fi robot models. But when he looked at the two famous robot characters from the comics – Astro Boy and Doraemon – he found them to have more of an appeal and resemblance to humans.
“By cooing and demanding to be hugged, Lovot becomes adorable. It also indicates a deeper human desire to be aware,” Hayashi described the initial visualization of the product.
Finally, Lovot designed it 43cm tall and weighs 3kg, the size of a kid. It has 13 degrees of freedom, meaning the parts can move along 13 axes of motion. A full charge allows the robot to move and interact for about 45 minutes. Then it will automatically return to the power outlet and charge the battery in 15 minutes.
Each Lovot has more than 20 microcontrollers and a minimum of 50 sensors, which detect contact, pressure, distance, obstacles, temperature and humidity. Robots love tickling and have sensors to show their joy. The most important part is the sensor horn mounted on the head that helps the robot detect the direction of sounds, voices and distinguish people from objects. Lovot can remember up to 1,000 people, but will pay special attention to its owner.
The product can also act as a monitoring device, allowing users to check on their children’s activity when they are not at home. Currently, the startup has launched a pre-sales campaign. The product will be delivered to customers in Japan by the end of this year and will begin to export within the 2020