If you're starting to feel like you're never going to be able to get that dog of yours housebroken, there's now hope for tomorrow - not hope for your mammalian dog, really, but help for you, the mammalian human. By way of a Japanese toy maker, you can now have a dog that literally does everything you command it to.
Debuted this past weekend at the International Tokyo Toy Show by Tomy, the i-SODOG, a robotic dog that you control with your smartphone (iOS or Android), will replicate some of the most endearing dog tricks like shaking hands or sitting when told but will also dance a jig if that's what you'd like to see it do. If there's something you want the robo-hound to guard while you're away, like the last slice of pizza or a baby, there's a mode you can enable that will cause i-SODOG to bark if somebody tries to steal your stuff.
See the canine below in action at the toy fair:
For interested parties, the crew over at Robots Dreams have full details on i-SODOG's specs.
i-SODOG is also capable of moving autonomously if controlling a robot is too much for you. The robot uses 15 ultra-compact "servomotor units" to move about and has a biometric sensor in the nose that permits it to communicate with other robot dogs when they're around. There are also sensors on the back and head so it will respond when you pet the robanimal (anibot?).
Having not seen this robotic canine in person and thus reserving the right to be wrong, I expect that i-SODOG will not be so cozy next to you on the sofa or lying at the foot of your bed. Who knows, I could be wrong.
As of right now, they're only set to go on sale in Japan next year for what is roughly $400 US so if you States-side folks want one, you better be ready to cough up the green for a pricey plane ticket or for some hefty shipping fees.[Via DigInfo TV.]