Beijing is currently investing a lot of money in the development of artificial intelligence as part of the “Made in China 2025” plan, an area where robotics is booming. Robots are being developed to keep company to elderly people, provide legal advice and a Chinese company even unveiled last year the first human-robot capable of maintaining simple conversations.
According to the International Federation of Robots, China has the largest stock of industrial robots in the world, with some 340,000 units in factories in the country engaged in manufacturing and the automotive industry. Service robots, including specialized medical equipment and automated vacuum cleaners, are estimated at $ 1.32 billion ($ 265 million) last year, and this figure is expected to rise to $ 4.9 billion in 2022. Last year, a group of monks from Beijing even created a robot distributing mantras and tips to reach nirvana.
Today it is Keeko who makes the headlines. This robot with these 60 centimeters high, tell stories to children and propose them logical problems to solve. Round and white and armless the robot travels on tiny wheels and has a double camera with both navigation sensors and front-facing cameras allowing users to record video. Keeko robots are now in more than 600 kindergartens across the country and their manufacturers are hoping to expand in China and Southeast Asia. With a cost of 10,000 yuan ($ 1,500), the same monthly salary of a kindergarten teacher, the robot present certain avantages for schools… Will Keebo join the ranks of educators in schools as his creator’s hope?