Saturday, November 08, 2008
A prototype of the telerobotic shopper based on a TMSUK-4 humanoid robot was demonstrated on July 10 at the Izutsuya department store in the city of Kitakyushu, Japan. The remote-control robot was demonstraded by an unwell grandmother unable to go shopping with her granddaughter sent the robot in her place. Using an NTT DoCoMo video-capable cellphone, the grandmother was able to control the robot and enjoy the shopping experience through the robot’s camera eyes. The woman maneuvered the robot to the hat section, eyed what was available on the shelf, and had her granddaughter model a few for her before deciding which one to purchase. According to tmsuk, this innovative type of “3D communications” technology brings us a step closer to a future in which telerobotic shoppers roam the fashionable areas of cities like New York or London.