10 Robots That Wowed Us At CES 2018
Robots Taking Over CES
Robots took over the CES 2018 show floor this year, showing off skills from playing ping pong to dominating in Scrabble. While many of these robots were still in prototype phase, robot manufacturers are finding lucrative niche markets and applications – like educational use cases for children and smart home products for consumers – that are helping them push their robots to market. Here are 10 robots that CRN saw at CES this year.
While some robots are made to play critical roles on the industrial floor or elsewhere, Canbot's robot just wants to play. The Canbot robot, designed by Chinese company Unisrobo Technology, is designed as a toy for children that can say its name, respond to voice commands and dance to music like Michael Jackson's "Billie Jean." Canbot is currently on the market and available in China.
CopRose Window Cleaning Robot
The CopRose smart window cleaner is a connected robot that keeps windows and other vertical surfaces streak-free. The robot uses a quick cleaning route on windows, as well as floors, walls and tables, and has a remote control so that users can control them from an app on their smartphones. The window cleaner is on the market for $132.
Forpheus Ping Pong Playing Robot
Omron's robot, Forpheus, showed off its ping pong playing prowess at CES this year. The robot uses artificial intelligence, cameras and sensors to play ping pong with humans using a robotic arm to sense and hit the ball. The robot even gives out words of encouragement and advice via a digital sign – including "Don't rush!" and "You got me this time!" Forpheus won't hit the market anytime soon -- the robot was instead meant to showcase Omron's technology and usage of AI.
Intelligent Vision System – Scrabble-Playing Robot
The robots at CES could do many things – including dominating at Scrabble. The Industrial Technology Research Institute's Intelligent Vision System for Companion Robots, otherwise known as ITRI, showed off their Scrabble skills during the show. The combination of artificial intelligence, 3-D vision recognition and hand-eye coordination helped these robots play Scrabble – and recognize individual words spelled by other players and where they are on the board game. The robot remains in prototype and has no set release date.
Motiv Robotics' RoboSimian
RoboSimian is a robot designed to operate in hazardous environments. This robot is capable of tethered or fully wireless operations – ranging from full autonomy to teleoperation – and can perform complex tasks. Because it can operate in extreme environments, the robot can perform duties in areas that humans may not be able to go into. RoboSimian, designed by Motiv Robotics, is still a technical project that has yet to see a release date.
The Robotis OP3, an $11,000 fully functional robot, spent its time on the CES show floor handing out pamphlets about itself to attendees. This "miniature humanoid robot platform" has advanced computational power, sensors, and dynamic motion ability. Externally, the robot has a camera on its face that recognizes and distinguishes humans from other objects, and a microphone and speaker to interact with humans. Internally, Robotis OP3 packs a built-in NUC with an Intel Core i3 processor, a management controller, a 1800mAh battery, and an array of modules.
Kuri is a robot for the home that acts as a home assistant and recently hit the market in December for $799. The robot can be voice-controlled, but the robot communicates only in a robot language of beeps and bloops, along with through facial expressions and head movements. Kuri responds affectionately to being petted, for instance. The robot is being developed by Mayfield Robotics, a Bosch-owned startup in Redwood City, Calif.
Honda 3E Robotics Concept
At CES, Honda showed off robotic technology that goes into vehicles to better assist passengers in situations like disaster recovery and recreation. The company's new 3E Robotics concept is a portfolio of robotics applications includes the 3E-A18, a companion robotics concepts that Honda said shows compassion through facial expressions; 3E-B18, a robotics mobile chair; 3E-C18, a small electric mobility concept for cargo spaces; and 3E-D18, an autonomous off-road vehicle concept with AI built in.
Buddy Companion Robot
At CES 2018, conference attendees got a glimpse of Buddy, a robot that acts as a smart home assistant. This robot, a product of Blue Frog Robotics, monitors the house, interacts with smart home devices, and interacts with family members living in the home. Buddy has built-in artificial intelligence as well as facial and vocal recognition, so the small robot can be more personable in family settings.
AvatarMind showed off its iPal "social robot" at CES this year - -a cute little device aimed at educating children. iPal can talk, dance, tell stories and play games in an engaging manner to help children develop social skills while teaching them educational programs from a tablet embedded on its body. Parents can also remotely control iPal to monitor their child's progress and safety from their smartphones. The 3.5-foot-tall robot can move around on four wheels ad interacts with children via a microphone and 1.3-megapixel camera in its eyes. A consumer version will go on the market in mid-2018.