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Toyota’s mini robot is the perfect companion

03 October 2016

Kirobo Mini is a miniature, fits in the palm of your hand communication partner developed to provide companionship for those seeking a friend.

Kirobo Mini (Credit: Toyota Motor Corporation)

Kirobo Mini fits in the palm of the hand and is only 10cm high when seated. It turns its head toward the person speaking and engages in casual conversation while moving its head and hands. Its compact size means it can be taken just about anywhere, helping it to fulfil its role as a cuddly companion always on hand for heart-touching communication.

Kiboro Mini's range of gestures and conversation abilities are mainly made possible by connecting Kirobo Mini via Bluetooth to smartphones installed with a dedicated app. A built-in camera enables Kirobo Mini to recognise people's facial expressions, through which it tries to detect their emotions so that it can accordingly adjust its manner of speaking and moving. Kirobo Mini can also converse based on information drawn from the vehicle or home.

Toyota Motor Corporation has been aiming to create automobiles that exceed customer expectations and that customers view as "irreplaceable companions". In a similar connection, Kiboro Mini is a manifestation of the Toyota Heart Project, which aims to develop a distinctly humanlike interaction between man and machine in a format different from automobiles based on the same fundamental concept of "Inspiring the Heart, Inspiring You", which Toyota applies to its automobile manufacturing.

Kirobo Mini (Credit: Toyota Motor Corporation)

By providing people opportunities to live with Kirobo Mini, Toyota hopes to contribute to making life and society more abundant.

Toyota Motor Corporation plans to launch sales of its compact and cuddlesome "Kirobo Mini" communication partner through Toyota vehicle dealers across Japan in 2017. The nationwide rollout will be preceded by presales at designated dealers in Tokyo and Aichi Prefecture this winter, for which advanced orders will be taken online. Kiboro Mini is tentatively priced at approximately £300 (excluding tax).

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