2016/04/14

Your Next Phone Could Be a Dancing Robot With Arms and Legs


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  • If you’re into that kind of thing.

    If you’ve been wondering when someone is going to release a dancing phone with arms, legs, and a projector on its head…wonder no more.
    Sharp started taking preorders for its new RoBoHoN phone on Thursday in Japan. The company says the new bipedal phones will be shipping to consumers May 26.
    But the little smartphone companion bots are not coming cheap. The 8-inch-tall phone, which weighs in a little under a pound and runs on Android 5.0, will cost about $1,800 in Japan.
    Osaka-based Sharp’s been struggling in the display business lately, operating at a loss of around $1.5 billion for the year. The company was recently acquired by Taiwan’s Foxconn after suffering two bank bailouts since 2012.
    Foxconn chief Terry Gou says he loves the “innovative engineering culture” at Sharp, The Wall Street Journalnotes. And while the company’s expensive bot probably won’t be a blockbuster or a game changer in the smartphone market, it’s certainly an innovative take on the future of robots.
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    A word of warning: It might look a little strange when you hold a robot up to your face to answer a call. But perhaps that’s the tradeoff for a little robot companion that can stand on the table and announce your daily schedule to you while you’re having breakfast, or sit next to you at the office and read your text messages out loud—is that awkward?
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