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 Monday, August 22, 2005

A Home-Sitting Robot When You Are Away On Holidays

  August 19, 2005

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It is called ROBORIOR.

Price tag: US $2,600 a piece. Now on sale in JAPAN.

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ROBORIOR is developed by Japanese robot maker Tmsuk Co. Ltd. and electronics company Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd., for 280,000 yen, or about US $2,600, each.

Worried about leaving your house empty while you go on vacation?

Japan has the answer: a house-sitter robot armed with a digital camera, infrared sensors and a videophone.

It is called the Roborior - a watermelon-sized eyeball on wheels that glows purple, blue and orange - continuing the country's love affair with gadgets.

Roborior can function as interior decor, but also as a virtual guard dog that can sense break-ins using infrared sensors, notify homeowners by calling their cellphones, and send videos from its digital camera to the owner's phone.

Such technology doesn't come cheaply. Takashimaya will sell the machines,
"We received a lot of inquiries after the demonstrations," Sakata said. "Our initial plan is to sell 2,000 robots."

Tmsuk has already produced a four-legged security robot called Banryu, which is about the size of a large dog and sells for two million yen, or $22,000.

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