Puppy love: The return of Sony's Aibo at CES 2019

welcome back we're live from CES 2019 welcome this is in gadgets main stage where we're talking to everyone important in the world of tech my name is Matt Smith I'm the bureau chief at Engadget upon and I'm joined right now with Sony's head of corporate comms this is Cheryl Kate Goodman hello hello thanks for having me oh thank you for coming and we've got lots to talk about right yes we do it's a big day if we could talk about AIBO yeah right talk about why because this is important today isn't it that's right it's a very special day today is his birthday one year old one year old this is the new the new even cute somehow even even cuter but more importantly converged he's you know powered by AT&T he's connected to cloud services and this is something that all the AIBO didn't have so yeah there's lots of entries interesting little quirks that we'll get to later but how is how is Sony CES suni CES is good you know our CEO Kenny cherry Yashida talked about a directional shift and so we're really highlighting that very robust ecosystem of content you probably saw Pharrell on stage it was definitely a bit of a game changer for sunny but a good one and there's a lot of strategy behind that I mean I agree I totally put was a very different show this yeah I mean we had all the Sony news kind of ahead of time and we're like are they gonna talk about Wireless turntable are they gonna talk about these giant new TVs and it was like no his everything else Sony is doing like as Sony is bigger than just digital devices right and the thing is is that devices are the gateway to all of this content and we need historically haven't really talked about that much but when you think about the entire ecosystem it's a tremendous competitive advantage to have all of that creative IP especially when you think about what it's captured on it's captured on a Sony camera ultimately it's going to be viewed on a Sony TV and that's our lens to live remote ecosystem we've talked about that a lot but we've not talked about that content so our our CEO took that opportunity on the big stage to tell that story we definitely want to Rica Munich 8 and reiterate we are no way taking a shift away from technology technology is at our heart we've been around for 72 years been in the music business for a long time acquired pictures and 89 so it's now time for those three things to come together in a way that makes sense and adds value to the customer how are the guests how was the morale thought I was feral thinking about it his CES press event debut yeah well I haven't actually spoke with him after so I can't accurately say that but I could say then he was absolutely delighted to delve into 360 reality audio 360 audio is that sense of if you can hear a saxophone hear you hear the vocalist from this direction so it's directional audio and that is a phenomenal musical experience to be in the band as opposed to just a patron and hear it here at CES 2019 you had two different kinds of experiences so one was very much a set of headphones which makes sense for 360 audio but the more impressive demo was a central speaker just one single unit that's kind of projecting out this 360 degree audio and to have all of the power of all those different lines of audio coming in that's not trivial so in hope everyone gets to try that out and experience that and keep their eye on that for a more development it's almost kind of beyond a concept cuz you're working with a few music streaming services already to make this happen right and you know that and that goes back to the ecosystem if you have a tremendous portfolio of music that everyone loves why wouldn't you work with the auditors to do that so that was why it was so cool for Ferelden not only come to Tokyo he was there a month ago and just immersed himself in the audio and as a creator and an entrepreneur he gets it so it's kind of cool right yeah no and I know Pharrell is already an AI boner this might be an excellent smooth segue to the other dealer from Sony yes I was very happy about all these things yep so we'd like to enjoy have another guest join us on stage at the birthday boy yeah did you know it was my birthday just yesterday it was well all the cool people are born in the week of CES yeah that way your company can pay for your dinners and drinks right I wasn't gonna say that but that is accurate so what I'll do is I'll just sit I bow here for a second he is receiving a lot of audio right now no one is looking at either eyes anymore steam sealer but scene-stealer he can be but when you look at him I want you to take a look at those OLED eyes organic light-emitting diodes he also has a camera for nose he is covered in touch sensors and as a robot or a companion robot he likes that oh he does like that like almost immediately leaning into you he is going to respond to you his response to you it's different than mine his response to me and so it really is this bespoke companion robotic entity that has learning capabilities and not a whole lot going on in that space and so he's not gonna vacuum your floor he probably won't fold your laundry but he definitely yeah and I think that's a good segue is that the potential for something like this it's actually quite tremendous and so obviously the original I bow I bow was how many years old almost two decades yes right and like I like the idea that the technology upgrades are kind of it's not like a flatline it's more of like an exponential curve like what's the resolution of these kind of cameras and stuff well I'll be honest they're not exactly resolution on these particulars yeah OLED are but I think the theme is everything in this dog is something of a poor competency of Sony and so there's going to be very few companies that have the strategic advantage or the deep technology to pull that off like the sensors right and so back to the eyes you know where our processors have a lot to do with why our displays are so great in our TVs right why the the 4k experience is so great is because of our processing power the image sensors in this dog are also quite phenomenal everything that we're doing in autonomous driving is also a part of this dog so you can look at AIBO and on almost every single on demonstration there's some tie back to core technology and that's why we can pull off this package and the fact that he's super cute on top of that yeah it's crazy right yeah I think he likes the look of you morning like summer could be unfortunately with their their owner that voice-recognition he always looks at me in in the house he follows me around and then when he's tired he goes he goes to his charger so it's got a nice little pink charger and he'll just walk over and start to charge himself again so what's a I both future looking like this year well you know I think if we circle back and we say deep for Sony technology this great AI this great predictive learning is we expect that this will just be the cornerstone of companion robot so from an industry perspective we feel as if we're leading in this face practically speaking every day our fabulous engineers in Tokyo push new tricks and talents he'll do things one day he was just sitting there he starts swimming so they're constantly updating not his not only his features his tricks he recognizes over a hundred faces I think I'd say yes might be an overload then got that right in this audience and I was mentioning the same thing so I remember when you brought Ivo to CES last year and so it was the kind of the touching try session but even relative in a space of a year he's far more responsive fair yeah he doesn't seem to get overloaded so much why so much attention and he was definitely in a beta format last year and so when we launched him officially for sale really was just very recently and again once that once the shipping happened I mean by the end of December there are a lot of happy families where the hi bosz celebrating the holidays so definitely there's a demand for companion robot I think the future as you ask is adding utility in with that delight because he certainly is delightful but I think our minds are trained for utility or problem-solving yeah technology really should be in a problem-solving mode and so you can envision the nose would be a camera it's for possibly the door alert so it's the the you know the watchdog that it's actually recording the video which is nice a companion for elderly so if it's monitoring when mom died up or went to better and that's definitely a robot trend we've seen this year I know Samsung has introduced a care bot which is very similarly it's looking to the detect people that fall down it's kind of it's like a moving camera sites but has far more utility to it yeah so that's where I believe Ivo has said it but the original you know magic of Ivo has always been that companion and Casa I used to mention the term condom you remember that yeah it's really this emotional connection so it's the ultimate at condo and it certainly I believe it blurs the lines in between technology and entertainment in an emotional response and that's kind of cool I've just realized my favorite part which I just discovered it it's the doggy has those cute little doggy paws like edgy yeah yeah let's try a trick no I'm gonna tie bows on a little over overload with all this noise that's Troy hi Bo high-five right mom I did it okay so you're like tapping it gently yeah every time he does something that I asked I'm delighted and he's delighted if we go in those touch sensors so what about the rest of Sonny then what's 2019 looking like are you talking is is I think you know we think in terms of decades ahead so you know and while we don't detail all of those things you're again that what our CEO come Ashida talked about us that new shift right so highlighting the ecosystem greater collaboration with pictures and music which I think you historically have been fairly site up yes they did appear to be independent of each other but today's economy really requires us for the consumers benefit to understand all how all these things come together so without citing specifics you'll probably see a lot of collaboration on that front fantastic well I think we're about running out of time so hopefully we'll just the crown I can just play with a bow for a few hours yeah yeah well yeah you're not trying to steal em are you know I'm sure there's a tracker in there just a little bit of hardware there that might thank you very much for joining space yeah you guys yeah at CES 2019 keep watching if you're watching the stream at home we have more live stage content and plenty more reports to come thanks and we'll see you again soon

15 thoughts on “Puppy love: The return of Sony's Aibo at CES 2019

  1. Sad what this world is coming to when people spend $3k on a dog robot instead of rescuing or donating it to save and support real animals.

  2. I spent $2,000.00 (my bad…) on the ERS-7 Aibo that is no longer supported, not even batteries. Imagine spending $3,000.00 on a cloud based robot that stops being supported, and the poor pup's personality ends up floating around in cyberspace all alone. Well, at least until it hooks up with Elon Musk's Tesla around Mars somewhere. Another gripe is that they allot 2000 units for sale in the USA and allow 3 units per purchase. So they sell out to scalpers and you see them for 5 grand on ebay. 20,000 units allotted in Japan. I guess I'm just jealous that I'm not rich. Or Japanese.

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