With all of the recent advancements in neural networks and deep learning technology, true artificial intelligence (AI) is now closer than ever. Autonomous cars, smart homes, and personal digital assistants living in our phones and connected speakers are not so far-fetched anymore, and the same goes for robot butlers. Speaking of which, the Chinese consumer electronics manufacturer Omate just debuted Yumi, an Android-powered assistant described as “the world’s first family robot.” If that name sounds familiar, it’s because Omate also happens to be the company which makes some impressive Android smartwatches like the Omate TrueSmart+. That’s right, not Android Wear wearables, Android wearables. Following that product philosophy which is trying to offer something that consumers aren’t asking for, but could still find attractive, Omate designed Yumi.
The Omate Yumi is a cute little robot powered by Android and infused with Amazon’s Alexa AI. It’s almost a foot tall and has a face displayed on a 5.5-inch 720p screen. Other than that, the Omate Yumi is powered by a 1.3 GHz quad-core Cortex-A53 CPU and 1GB of RAM. It boasts a 5-megapixel front camera which can be used for video calls and surveillance and communicates with other devices via Bluetooth 4.0 and Wi-Fi. While the robot is capable of moving on wheels, it wasn’t exactly designed with extreme mobility in mind (given how it lacks sensors which would give it spatial awareness.) On the plus side, this means that it’s much cheaper than something like the ASUS Zenbo. More specifically, Omate confirmed that Yumi will retail for $349.99 and you’ll even be able to get a $100 discount if you pledge to its Indiegogo campaign which is scheduled to begin on November 15th.
The robot will be available in White and Black and is currently expected to start shipping by March. While Omate hasn’t specifically commented on the fact that it’s using a crowdfunding platform to launch its latest creation, despite not being a startup that’s low on funds, it’s to be presumed that the company still isn’t certain how much interest a robot butler would currently garner. In that case, it makes sense that firm has decided to take a safer route and use crowdfunding to finish development of its cute assistant. While you’re waiting for the Omate Yumi Indiegogo campaign to kick off, you can check out the new robot in the gallery and announcement trailer below.