Welcome to the future, where you can have a “pet” that looks like a cat without having to bear the responsibilities of an actual cat owner, so none of those poop cleaning sessions.
In February, Panasonic introduced NICOBO, a companion robot that can wag its tail, say a few words, blink its eyes and also, fart whenever it feels like it. It looks more like an over-stuffed sock puppet than a cat, but its purpose is to make everyone around it happy.
It may look very simple, but inside it features a built-in microphone, camera and touch sensors. These devices allow it to recognise your face, turns towards you, and feel whenever you’re petting or hugging it.
The project was done through a crowdfunding campaign by Panasonic in collaboration with robotic researchers from Toyohashi University of Technology.
Panasonic only made 320 units of it, with each unit priced at around USD360 (RM1,485.90). All of them have already sold out in the pre-order.
While you don’t have to spend money on cat food, NICOBO owners need to spend around USD10 (RM41) to connect it to your smartphone and for software updates in the future, you know, to keep it farting.