Samsung Offering Free Android-Powered Hugs for the Holidays
If you could really use a hug, look no further than Samsung’s latest Android-powered robot that gives out — you guessed it — free hugs. Designed specifically for the Holiday season, Samsung calls the robot “Galaxy X’MAS Hugs.” Does such a robot actually have real world implication? It could …
Samsung’s Android-power hugbot currently resides in Tokyo, where it’s giving hugs non-stop, all day. The device’s head is powered by a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10-inch, with a Samsung Galaxy S II as its “heart,” in addition to Android-powered servo-circuitry. Samsung is keeping tabs on its site on how many free hugs the robot has given out. Each hug recipient is subsequently recorded with a number and associated video of said hug. Currently, you can view more than 3,000 individual hugs.
Are there real-world implications? Kind of. Such a robot means that increasingly more complex robotic tasks can be powered by something more or less “consumer grade.” The action of a hug is considerably more complex than, say, running a vending machine. But the implications of cheaply built Android-powered automatons roaming the planet might not be such a bad idea. Could you imagine a Roomba with a bit more sophistication? Perhaps a computer numerically controlled (CNC) machine used in manufacturing that runs completely off an Android tablet? It’s all possible in the near future.
I think the takeaway of X’MAS Hugs is that the idea of a computer, which was once a box with parts in it, is quickly changing. How long before we stop differentiating between tablets, phones, laptops and more? Chew on that as you ring in the new year.