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LG releases new robot it hopes will lead to ‘zero labour home’

 (LG)
(LG)

LG has revealed a new robot it claims could help bring the “zero labour home”.

The robot has two legs with wheels on the end of them so that it can follow its owner around and undertake tasks. The legs also allow it to “users and express emotions through movements made possible by its articulated leg joints”, the company said in its announcement.

LG’s new “Ai agent” is intended to be something like the smart hubs offered by Amazon’s Alexa and others. But since it is able to move around it can also use its image recognition and other artificial intelligence tools to understand its context and better help users, LG claimed.

The new machine is one of a range of smart home products that will be exhibited during this year’s CES, the consumer electronics show that is hosted in Las Vegas at the start of every year. LG itself has revealed a range of products in advance of the launch, including a strange hybrid of a TV and speaker that includes a transparent OLED screen.

Announcing the AI agent, LG pointed to a range of technologies that are already present in much smart home equipment. It can gather data on the humidity and temperature, for instance, or use cameras to monitor pets.

However, because of its wheels and legs it can also cruise around the house. It can “autonomously patrol the home” if nobody is in, for instance, allowing it to alert people if there is an intruder or even turn off unused devices.

LG said not only that the technology was a new product in the smart home market but also that it was looking to “liberate users from the burden of housework”.

“Our groundbreaking smart home AI agent combines cutting-edge autonomous mobility and AI technologies with advanced communication capabilities and services to help free customers from household chores,” said Lyu Jae-cheol, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solution Company, in a statement.

Proponents of robotics have repeatedly claimed that their products will eventually be able to set people free from housework. Elon Musk has said that the upcoming Tesla Bot will help “millions” of people, for instance – but it is still yet to be properly revealed.