Japan has created a prototype guide robot

IBM's Japanese division, in collaboration with several partners, has created a prototype guide robot for people with visual impairments. The Asahi Shimbun newspaper writes about the development.

The unusual robot is equipped with a 3D sensor, a computing module that controls all of these components, as well as wheel motors and batteries. Thanks to these devices, as well as the camera, the robot allows people with visual impairments to safely walk both on the streets and in the premises, reports TASS. He warns of obstacles with the help of tactile signals, which are transmitted to a special wearable device. Also, the robot is able to plot routes and inform the owner of useful information about establishments, shops and other objects nearby.

Outwardly, the robot resembles a small suitcase, and the idea of this appearance came to IBM Japan employee Tieko Asakawa: during a business trip abroad, a woman who has vision problems walked along the street with a suitcase and thought that it could be turned into a real assistant for the blind and visually impaired .

"It is impossible for blind people to walk around the city alone and feel free and safe. I want to make it possible," Asakawa said.

The creators of the guide robot are planning to begin its public trials this year. At the first stage, the prototypes will be tested on the premises, and then they will be finalized for use on the streets. It is expected that the robot will appear on the market in 2022.

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