Humanoid robots have been fascinating people ever since the development of robots. In science fiction, these human-like robots are shown to be capable of emulating human expressions, but in reality the capabilities of humanoid robots are quite limited.
Now, in a bid to bring humanlike robots closer to reality, Hanson Robotics has developed a realistic humanoid robot named Han. Han greeted visitors at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair on April 18th, 2015.
Han’s robot head is equipped with cameras and pattern recognition software to recognize and interact with humans. Around forty motors control Han’s facial muscles. Han has humanlike skin; its face is covered in a soft material called ‘frubber’ (short for flesh rubber).
Han can mimic most human expressions and hold a simple interactive conversation with you…complete with eye contact. It can also recognize the gender and age of humans. Beyond facial expressions, it can recognize simple emotions like ‘happy’ or ‘sad’ as well.
Its developers believe it can serve a range of functions, especially in hotels and other customer service businesses where face-to-face communication is important.
Hanson Robotics plans to commercialize this technology via a female robot called Eva, which will go on sale later this year. The company has yet to determine a price.