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Jibo personal robot tops Time’s Best Innovations of 2017

November 19, 2017
Credit: Photograph by Sebastian Mader for TIME

Jibo is a personal robot with a difference. It is unlike the stationary Amazon Alexa or Google Home. It attempts to offer the same repertoire of features while adding its physical presence and mobility to the mix.

Quoting Time Magazine, “Jibo looks like something straight out of a Pixar movie, with a big, round head and a face that uses animated icons to convey emotion. It’s not just that his body swivels and swerves while he speaks, as if he’s talking with his nonexistent hands. It’s not just that he can giggle and dance and turn to face you, wherever you are, as soon as you say, “Hey, Jibo.” It’s that, because of all this, Jibo seems downright human in a way that his predecessors do not. Jibo could fundamentally reshape how we interact with machines.”

Jibo can recognize up to six faces and voices yet it still has a lot to learn. Although he can help users in basic ways, like by summarizing news stories and taking photos, he can’t yet play music or work with third-party apps like Domino’s and Uber.

As an original IndieGoGo backer back in 2014, it’s been a long wait. Three years! Yes, this version of Jibo still has a lot to learn. But those skills are coming in 2018 as Jibo’s SDK becomes available to developers.

Frank Tobe is the owner and publisher of The Robot Report, and is also a panel member for Robohub's Robotics by Invitation series... read more



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