By: Nick Gambino
Whether robots in the future are going to make our lives easier as an electronic servant wired to do our bidding or if the little machines with personality will turn against us and be our ultimate demise, is still up for debate.
What I do know is that at CES 2018, robots were front and center and seemed to further cement their place amongst all of our tablets, speakers, and smartphones. In fact, if you think about it, most of them are basically just a souped-up digital assistant with wheels or legs and a tablet screen for a face.
And while the robots we saw at the annual show in Las Vegas were fun and some even impressive, part of me thought we’d be a lot further along in the robotics area by 2018. I can’t help but remember the robot in Rocky IV way back in 1985. That was over 30 years ago.
So if we’re only now starting to catch up with that Stallone gem, then we’ve got to step up our game. At least these guys are a start.
Sony resurrected the robot dog they discontinued back in 2006 with this spruced-up version meant to be more of a companion than an assistant. The little fur-less guy reacts to petting and commands with programmable features to teach him new tricks. For now, it’s only being sold in Japan with a hefty price tag upwards of $1700.
Blue Frogs Robotics Buddy
Perhaps the friendliest looking robot at CES, Buddy aims to fit into the IoT niche. He can help control smart homes, act as a security guard of sorts by patrolling your home, play music and a number of other things. Buddy the Robot is now gearing up for production.
Sophia The Robot
Sophia is damn frightening mainly due to how real she looks. Less Rocky IV and more Blade Runner, Sophia was unveiled earlier but at CES 2018 this lady robot finally got legs. We watched as she walked around the showroom floor for the first time. She has over 60 facial expressions at her disposal as well as a voice allowing for conversations, though for now, her topics are limited.
Aeolus was perhaps one of the most impressive robots on display capable of cleaning and all-around assistance. It can fetch objects for you as well as put objects away, vacuum, act as security and more. With built-in Alexa, it has the added benefit of being voice-controlled.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nick Gambino is a regular script writer and tech beat reporter for NewsWatch. He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and daughter.