Small Robots That Will Invade Your Home Sooner Than You Think

Jibo: The Social Robot with a Witty Sense of Humour

Jibo is a cute little social robot with a ‘personality’ which can easily become a family’s best friend. It is packed with a witty sense of humor, cheerful animations and a body that swivels and dances, making it the perfect companion robot.

It is crowdfunded and created by Boston based start-up by the same name. The design elements used allows it to easily and naturally connect with its human owners.

The camera and microphones allow it to learn the voices and faces of up to 16 people. And it specifically recognizes the voices of family members talking to it and responds to the call of “Hey Jibo”.

It can perform a number of handy tasks from setting an alarm, taking pictures, telling you the weather and even answering your quirky questions. It is also compatible with IFTTT triggers and can turn Philips hue lights on or off and adjust your Nest Thermostat.

Mykie: The Kitchen Assistant Robot

‘My Kitchen Elf’ or Mykie is a concept personal kitchen assistant from Bosch which could invade your home soon. It works on the similar grounds such as Alexa from Amazon or Google Home.

But this robotic sous-chef comes with a bit of a culinary pedigree. Whether you are an experienced cook or just a beginner, Mykie can be a handy companion to have at the kitchen counter.

It can plan your meal by connecting to a network of home appliances. For example, it helps you find recipes with just the ingredients available in the fridge.

 Also, the built-in projector helps project recipes right into the walls of the kitchen or even show videos by simply using the voice activation or the touchscreen. It makes cooking an interactive affair by connecting with your family and friends worldwide through an integrated camera.

 Aido: A Smart Home Robot

You could easily confuse Aido for Wall-E’s girlfriend Eve and it’s not just perfect for kids but everyone in the household. Aido is a unique mobile robot which balances itself on a ball that can maneuver around complex spaces like furniture and other minor obstacles in the house.

This family robot was also designed to make its interaction with human beings as natural and intuitive as possible. It can perform tasks like performing household tasks, playing with kids, keeping your home safe and even handling your schedule.

ElliQ: An Active Aging Companion

ElliQ is a proactive social robot that’s built and designed by Intuition Robotics for older adults. It tries to overcome the digital divide that exists for the older generations.

The connected picture frame makes connecting with families an easy task and even messaging, sharing pictures and video chatting. It helps older people get value from the internet without mastering the tools whether proactively or reactively.

It also helps them remain independent longer by scheduling events like reminders for medication or share wellness information with families. ElliQ comprises two elements, a connected picture frame which is a tablet that is removable and a swiveling head which lights up and moves and actuates in a ‘humanesque’ manner.

Buddy: A Companion Robot for the Family

Buddy is an open source robot powered by Unity 3D and Android software, but it is also a free range robot that can move around your house. This social robot/home assistant from Blue Frog Robotics can be a great companion for the whole family.

It can recognize you, remind you of things and patrol your house with a beaming smile across its face. Buddy’s security route is pretty advanced because you can have it stand in one spot and watch a location.

Or, you can make him go from waypoint to waypoint to look out for something out of the ordinary. It also claims to connect, protect and interact with each member of the family.

And, with its array of sensors and autonomous maneuverability, Buddy is able to do anything from detecting fire and burglars to playing hide and seek.

Kuri: A Security Robot with a Personality

An adorable small robot that looks much like a Pixar character, Kuri is a home robot that can watch over your kids like a nanny and even watch your place while you are away. Not to be mistaken for a vacuum cleaner like a Roomba, its features are a basic mix of companionship, entertainment, and utility.

Mayfield Robotics, a start-up based in San Francisco envisioned creating an adorable home robot that could add a spark to your home life. Though it can’t perform household tasks, it can easily watch over your kids or house through the 1080p camera.

It plays music, podcast or read e-books or it can remind you to turn off the oven while conveying cute and adorable expressions at the same time.

Pico: A Desktop Companion Robot from Panasonic

Panasonic’s Pico is an evolution of AI and an adorable robot helper that will live in the homes of the future. It is an intelligent desktop robotic assistant that can perform tasks like voice control and interaction, independently move around the desktop and even project movies.

It includes a series of infrared sensors that can detect ledges and obstacles. The AI behind Pico can handle natural language processing and can communicate with devices in other locations as well.

It is said to have human-like movements and skills and is equipped with WiFi to access cloud data. It also comes with a wireless charging station, but the model is still a concept and could soon be a part of your office or desktop

Zenbo: A Smart Little Companion

Zenbo, the robotic personal assistant developed by Asus is as large as a vacuum cleaner with a LED display head and complete with a lifelike face. The smart home robot is able to move independently and can respond to voice commands which allow you to even strike up conversations with it.

The robotic home assistant performs the usual functions including setting reminders, playing music and even making calls. But Asus calls Zenbo as much more of a companion which can read stories with an interactive display to young children and help them sleep at night.

It can even provide company to the elderly, reminding them about medications and notifying families in cases of emergencies.

Aibo: A Man’s Best Robot Friend

Sony is ready to unleash man’s best robot friend again, the super-cute Aibo robot dog. The previous version of the Aibo robot dog was launched nearly 18 years ago but discontinued in 2006.

The old dog has since learned new tricks and the new model reacts to your voice commands and responds to petting. It can also play with toys like the special bone, and to complement its cuteness, it has blinking OLED eyes.

There is an app that helps it learn new tricks and where you can access photos taken by the dog as well. The cameras and built-in sensors also help the dog learn locations and map out rooms.

It has AI which develops a unique personality over time by collecting data on an owner’s reaction, so no two Aibo’s are the same.

CX-1: A Robot Luggage that Never Loses Your Sight

No one wants to ever lose their luggage, but what if you have a luggage that won’t lose you. The CX-1 is a self-driving luggage which has camera sensors on it to follow your every step and go where ever you go.

The self-driving technology is able to track the owner through the camera, but if you go out of range, it can still find you with the help of a connected wristband. The camera also has facial recognition which prevents it from following someone else.

And, the four wheel drive moves around at a maximum speed of nearly 7 mph. This carry-on luggage is made by a Chinese company called ForwardX Robotics.

The version shown at the CES is just a demo and company should make the robot available sometime this year.