JIBO, World’s First Family Robot Is Preparing to Meet You

Created by MIT’s robotics professor Dr. Cynthia Breazeal, JIBO is a highly interactive social robot designed to help and assist all members of your family in their activities, thanks to its broad range of features or skills. Unlike today’s smart assistant systems and devices JIBO has a personality, it aims to act and feel almost like it were a member of the family rather than just another device lying around the house. Dr. Breazeal, a pioneer in the social robotics field, hopes that JIBO will have a major impact on how people perceive new technologies and their benefits.

JIBO Family Robot

JIBO Family Robot | Photo: JIBO

It seems that part of the job is already done, started in July this year, with a goal of US$100,000, the crowdfunding campaign for JIBO ended this week raising almost US$2.3 million from over 5500 supporters, and went straight into the top 5 most funded campaigns on Indiegogo.

The developer version of JIBO will be released in the second part of 2015, together with the JIBOAlive SDK and Expression Pack software, while the consumer version, JIBOAlive toolkit, software and mobile apps for iOS and Android will be released by the end of the year. The full public release will take place early 2016. Preorders can be placed on the JIBO website, priced at US$599 for the consumer version and US$699 for the developer edition, and are expected to ship in April 2016.

That being said let’s take a quick look at the many features of JIBO, the world’s first family robot, as it is taglined, as well as list the technical specifications known to date.

JIBO is able to learn based on interactions, continuously improving its response to better serve you in daily life. Thanks to its two high resolution cameras it can perform facial recognition and tracking, capture photos and videos on demand or proactively, as well as enable video calling. As further development it will be also well suited as a telepresence robot.

Being a social robot it has the ability to communicate in natural language and has powerful microphones for precisely capturing people’s voices. Thanks to its friendly look and mechanical design, it can provide visual cues when interacting, offering a very familiar experience. It can deliver messages to you or any family member, and be a reminder for calendar entries or other tasks.

Presentation video

Specifications

  • CPU: High-end ARM-based mobile processor
  • Platform: Embedded Linux-based
  • Communications: WiFi, Bluetooth
  • HD LCD touchscreen display
  • Language: US English
  • Sensors:
    • 2 color stereo cameras
    • 360 degree sound localization microphones
    • Full body touch sensors
  • 2 premium speakers
  • Movement: 3 full-revolute axes with high resolution encoder and feedback control
  • Full spectrum ambient LED lighting
  • Dimensions: 28cm (11in) tall, base diameter: 15cm (6in)approximately 11 inches tall (28 cm), 6 inches (15 cm) diameter base
  • Weight: 2.7kg (6lbs.) approx.
  • Material: aluminum, ABS plastic, glass
  • Power: AC adapter and battery-ready
JIBO Robot Looking Up

JIBO Robot Looking Up | Photo: JIBO

Software

  • JiboAlive SDK
    • Web-based JavaScript visual programming tool
    • Web-based animation-creation tool
    • JavaScript API access to animation, sound, speech and perception APIs
    • Library of animations, sounds, vocalizations
    • Text-to-speech TTS API for Jibo’s voice
    • Web-based virtual simulator
  • JiboAlive Pro SDK
    • Everything in the JiboAlive SDK, plus
    • JavaScript API access to Jibo’s sensory systems
    • Eclipse plugin
    • Sample source code
    • Jibo Developer Program enrollment

Premises look very good for JIBO, we are eager to see how it will fit in our lives. What do you think, would you consider buying one?