Interactive Singlish-Speaking Robi Launches in Singapore

Robi, the interactive bilingual (English & Mandarin, and some Singlish!) robotic companion by DeAGOSTINI has launched with a roadshow at the Marina Square Central Atrium, and will run over the weekend of 9 to 10 July. Wondering what Robi is all about? We ran a review of sorts on a prototype of Robi, so be sure to check it out.

Professor Tomotaka Takahashi, the creator of Robi, will be on site to introduce Robi to visitors. If you manage to head down to the roadshow, be sure to catch the 100 Robi robots perform a synchonized dance.

Here’s a preview of the 100 Robi robots performance that took place on 8th July. They started things off with doing a headcount in Japanese, followed by a synchronized wave, and ending off with a synchronized dance. It sure is a sight to behold.

“I truly believe that artificial intelligence and the creation of responsive robots can bring tremendous benefits to people and society, and I dream of fostering closer relationships between robots and human beings. We’re excited to introduce Robi to Singapore, and hope to inspire the next generation of Singaporeans to harness technology to improve the lives of citizens and build stronger communities,”  – Professor Tomotaka Takahashi.

A Little More About Professor Tomotaka Takahashi

Professor Tomotaka Takahashi is a roboticist and founder of Kyoto University’s ROBO-GARAGE. He is highly acclaimed for creating humanoid robots from concept through to production that are deeply relatable to humans. He has been recognized by TIME magazine as one of the “Coolest Inventions 2004”, and has created 3 Guinness World Records. These include the robot astronaut “Kirobo”, Guinness record holder “Evolta” and the world best seller “Robi”.

Tomotaka Takahashi, creator of Robi, poses with the humanoid robot.
Tomotaka Takahashi, creator of Robi, poses with the humanoid robot.

In April 2016, he even collaborated with Sharp to come up with a portable robot-shaped Android smartphone called RoBoHon, which was released only in Japan at a cool US$1,800. One of its coolest features would have to be the newly developed built-in compact laser projector on its forehead which allows users to project photos, videos, and maps onto a screen or wall.

Highlights from the Launch Event

Robotic biscuit. #NomNomNom. #sgrobi #robi #singapore #robot #geek #geekculture #biscuit

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Robi’s Key Features and Functions

  • Dimensions: Height: 34 cm – Weight: Approx. 1kg
  • Light-up LEDs: Built-in LEDs allow Robi’s eyes and mouth to respond to words and movement. His eyes can glow red, yellow, green and blue, while his mouth will glow red.
  • Speech-recognition Board: Robi has a sophisticated speech recognition board programmed to understand different phrases and reply appropriately. The Singapore version is bilingual, and can speak English and Mandarin, as well as some Singlish phrases.
  • Microcontroller Board: The high-performance microcontroller board controls important functions such as Robi’s motion and reactions.
  • Speaker: Robi’s chest includes a miniature speaker for his spoken responses.
  • Remote-control Module: Emits infrared signals like a remote control to operate compatible TV sets.
  • Motion Sensors: Robi’s motion sensors detect human presence and will turn his face in response to movement.
  • Servo Motors: Robi’s movements are controlled by a total of 20 servos. They use the Robi-servo command system to ensure smooth movement, and have simple, robust wiring connections.
  • Dual-purpose ‘Scarf’: Robi’s light-blue scarf functions as a convenient handle for lifting him without damage to his joints and internal wiring.
  • Timer: Robi can count down a specified number of minutes, and tell you when the time is up.
  • Cleaning: Robi can use his feet to polish a tabletop or hard floor surface.
  • Security Setting: Robi can be set to ask for a password and respond with an alert if he gets the wrong answer
  • Games: Robi knows how to play a variety of games, including ‘soccer’ and quizzes.
  • Battery Charging: When Robi’s batteries begin to run low, he says ‘I’m hungry’ to let you know. Then it’s time to turn on his charging seat, so Robi can start to recharge.

Where to Buy

Robi retails at S$28.90 per issue (the 1st issue is at a promo price of just S$9.90) and is currently available at selected stores across the following retailers: 7-Eleven, Books Kinokuniya, FairPrice, FairPrice Online, Giant Hypermarket, MPH Bookstores, Popular, SPC (Singapore Petroleum Company), SPH Buzz, Toy Or Game, Warehouse Club and Times Bookstores.

Also, there will be 4 issues that will costs more due to the expensive components in the package:

  • Issue 43 (CPU): S$55
  • Issue 62 (Physical sensor): S$42
  • Issue 63 (Physical sensor): S$42
  • Issue 67 (Speech recognition board): S$55

You’re entitled to promotions if Robi is purchased via the official online store: www.robi.sg