SoftBank graduate presents a “gentle” satellite-robot

2018/12/18 Japan
⠀ TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese startup Groove X, founded by an alumni of SoftBank Group Corp’s robotics unit, unveiled its first creation on Tuesday – a companion robot designed to make users happy.

⠀ The Lovot, an amalgam of “love” and “robot”, cannot help with the housework but it will “draw out your ability to love,” Groove X founder and CEO Kaname Hayashi told reporters at the launch in Tokyo.

⠀ SoftBank has recently increased its focus on more practical robots, last month launching the Whiz autonomous cleaning machine which uses technology from portfolio company U.S.-based Brain Corp. ⠀ As with Pepper, Lovot's uptake is likely to be hampered by its hefty price tag of 349,000 yen ($3,100) before tax with ongoing subscription fees. Units will start shipping in late 2019. ⠀ Japan ranks lowest among the G7 highly industrialised nations in the United Nations annual happiness ranking.
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