750 Kearny Street
San Francisco, California 94108

On July 20, Tomy Co Ltd and Sanyo Electric Co Ltd held a press conference to introduce Tomy's bipedal humanoid robot, called i-SOBOT. According to Tomy, i-SOBOT has already been certified as "the smallest humanoid robot in production" by Guinness World Records.

The 165mm-high robot is capable of recognizing voice commands, and can "speak" and respond to hundreds of words and phrases. It can perform preprogrammed actions, has over 90 types of sound effect and is able to play five songs. "Unlike most products in its price range, i-SOBOT is capable of a true bipedal walking action, which includes smooth and intricate eight-directional movement -- forward, backward, side-to-side or diagonal -- as well as dancing, lying down and getting up again, somersaults, karate actions and many other actions requiring human-like self-powered articulation," said Yoshiro Takagi, manager, Business Development Team, Global Business Headquarters at Tomy.

Most bipedal robots are sold as kits and require extensive assembly and complicated software programming on a PC. i-SOBOT, however, comes fully assembled and includes a matching infrared remote control which allows easy programming using simple code. The small robot is integrated with 17 custom-developed servo-motors, 19 IC chips, and has a built-in gyro-sensor. It weighs 350g (including batteries).

i-SOBOT is powered by eneloop, Sanyo's Ni-MH rechargeable batteries. "Hobby robots like i-SOBOT usually use dry cell. However, with alkaline dry cell, i-SOBOT can operate only for ten to 20 minutes, and with eneloop i-SOBOT can operate for almost one hour," explained Takagi. "With these eco-friendly batteries, we also support Sanyo's Think GAIA vision."

i-SOBOT's suggested retail price is ¥31,290 (5% consumption tax included), which includes the i-SOBOT pre-assembled robot, an LCD remote control unit, 3 AA eneloop rechargeable batteries and an eneloop recharger. i-SOBOT is expected to go on sale in the US and Japan this October, and in Europe in early 2008. Tomy is expecting to sell 300,000 units worldwide in the first year.

If you'd like to buy tomy toys, visit http://www.toy-match.com

Official Website: http://techon.nikkeibp.co.jp/english/NEWS_EN/20070724/136548/

Added by ak47 on July 27, 2007

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