Snoring robot dogs, Toyota’s city of the future, and more top news | Product Perspectives #6

Product Perspectives 6

It’s that time of the week again! CES gave us some great innovations, the future is here, and the product world just keeps on turning.

So let’s dive into the weekly Product news…

Robot Dog Wins Hearts at CES

Tombot CEO, Tom Stevens was faced with the heartbreaking task of removing his mother’s pet dog from her care when her Alzheimers became too severe.

Loneliness among the elderly continues to be one of the biggest problems that society faces, so there’s no shortage of need for solutions.

Whilst it might not be the shiniest innovation from CES last week, Jennie is possibly the most heart-warming!

Jennie is a realistic, animatronic dog, hypoallergenic, and fitted with touch sensors in order to react to pats like a real puppy.

The project was backed up by intense data and research into human/dog friendships, and the effects of pet-ownership on those with dementia.

Tombot, a robotics startup, collaborated with the Jim Henson Company to create Jennie, who wags her tail, and makes realistic puppy noises. When not stimulated, she falls asleep and even starts snoring.

At $449 USD, Jennie is also fairly affordable.

In a world too often obsessed with solutions for faster WiFi, sharper cameras, and clearer TV screens, seeing innovations that could bring a little joy to residential homes and hospitals worldwide is certainly refreshing.

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Foldable Laptops Maximize Screen Potential

Intel has introduced a new foldable laptop design, just as foldable phones have started taking off!

Intel foldable laptop
Image Credit: Intel

Named ‘Horseshoe Bend’, the device features a massive 17-inch screen. Despite looking like something straight from sci-fi, it’s entirely grounded in reality, as we’ve been seeing the slow but steady rise of foldable tech in the last few years.

At the moment, Intel’s offering is just a design concept, which may heavily influence future devices taken to market.

Intel Horseshoe Bend gif
Image Credit: Intel

Whatever the future of this design, it left many with hands itching to get ahold of it!

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Toyota Pitches A Modern Utopia

We’re only on Day 13, but Toyota might have already set the record for Most Ambitious Project of 2020!

Woven City is their vision for a thoroughly modern town at the base of Mt. Fuji, which will function as a ‘living laboratory’ in 14 different categories including multi-generational assisted living, smart homes, robotics, mobility as a service, and hydrogen-powered infrastructure.

What will life look like for the residents of this ecosystem/utopia?

toyota the woven city
Image Credit: Toyota

Life in the prototype city will include fully autonomous and sustainable transport, live-in robots to perform minor tasks, and Danish architecture. Bjarke Ingels, the designer behind enviable sites such as Google’s Mountain View offices, is leading the city’s design.

The goal is to test, innovate, and learn how exactly the ‘ideal world’ would work. Bjarke also emphasises his intentions with the project: “The Woven City will explore ways to stimulate human interaction in the urban space.”

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Teslas Will Talk

Elon Musk continues to live up to his pop-culture persona as the real-life Tony Stark.

Musk tweeted a video of a Tesla cruising by, with a voice saying “Well don’t just stand there staring, hop in.’

Irked drivers have joked about having a button that yells at the idiot in front of you for decades. So a talking car could be just what the people want!

However some are taking the news in a less positive light, calling the feature a gimmick, and ‘childish.’

What do you think about talking Teslas? Is this the future for the automobile industry? Let us know on Twitter!

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