Androids that offer "digital immortality" begin mass production in Russia

A company claims to make the world's first humanoid android and offers 'digital immortality".

Promobot
  • Promobot, a Russian company, makes the world's first humanoid android.
  • The model Robo-C robot can't walk but has a sophisticated personality AI.
  • The android can be made to look like any human.


We are well on our way to the sci-fi staple of a world inhabited by both people and androids. A startup from Russia is launching mass production of robotic clones of humans.

"Promobot" is offering autonomous service androids that can be made to look like anyone on Earth. The company says their creations are "robot companions," while its Robo-C android is the first of its kind, not only looking like a human but being useful in "business processes".

Aleksei Luzhakov, Promobot's Chairman of the Board of Directors said in a press release that "Everyone will now be able to order a robot with any appearance — for professional or personal use."

Furthermore, he thinks that their new line of bots will spearhead an entirely fresh market in education, entertainment and service industries, adding "Imagine a replica of Michael Jordan selling basketball uniforms and William Shakespeare reading his own texts in a museum?"

Where else can such a robot be useful? As a consultant, behaving like a regular employee by answering questions, or as an administrator, performing such tasks as booking meetings. They can also work in offices or the government, greeting people and relaying information.

And, of course, if you're in the market for a home robot, you should keep in mind that Robo-Cs can be made to look like any family member. In a way, they can also offer "digital immortality," as Promobot co-founder Oleg Kivokurtsev expressed to CNBC.

Robo-C on CNBC | Promobot

With its AI endowed by 100,000 speech modules, the Promobot's android is able to reproduce the way any person talks by building linguistic models based on the way the speech and other knowledge of the subject. The bot's face has 18 moving parts, giving it the ability to make 600 micro-expressions.

One limitation - it currently can't walk but its upper body has three degrees of free movement.

Promobot is now taking orders for the Robo-C, claiming to already be the biggest manufacturer of autonomous service robots in Northern and Eastern Europe, whose machines can be found in 35 counties in a variety of professions. The android can run you from $20,000 to $50,000, based on various customization options.

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