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Softbank Mobile to Start Selling Robots

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Japan's Softbank Mobile has moved into robotics, and will be putting robots into some of its stores as well as selling them to consumers.

The robot, called Pepper is said to be the world's first personal robot that can also read human emotions and react to them.

Pepper also comes equipped with capabilities and an interface that enables communication with people, including the latest voice recognition technology, superior joint technology to realize graceful gestures, and emotion recognition that analyzes expressions and voice tones.

Capabilities that help Pepper evolve by learning through daily interactions with people are also being planned for the commercial launch timing.

A software development kit (SDK) will be provided for creating robot apps, and in September 2014, a Tech Festival in Tokyo is under planning to provide technical specifications, development methods and other details.

Masayoshi Son, Chairman & CEO of SoftBank Corp., commented, "Since foundation, we have followed our corporate philosophy of 'Information Revolution - Happiness for everyone.' To realize our vision, we have made a new entry into the robot business with the aim of developing affectionate robots that make people smile. Using emotion engines and Cloud AI, which evolves with collective wisdom, we're making this happen. As our first entry, we are pleased to offer the world's first personal robot that reads emotions, Pepper, which we developed with Aldebaran."

Shop staff working in the Softbank retail stores had better watch out.


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Tags: softbank  Japan