Robots can do almost anything – build cars, explore Mars, and run through the woods like a monster – but now they can sing and dance and even play songs after hearing their rhythm lines clapped out by their owners. Launching at TechCrunch Disrupt SF, Tovbot is one of the coolest robots you’ll see today.
Tovbot is the brain-child of Gil Weinberg, Ph.D. We interviewed Weinberg in Georgia a few months ago and he told us that he was ready to commercialize and present his robots at Disrupt. Today he launched a Kickstarter for his project and you can pledge $149 to get your own Shimi Tovbot to be shipped later this year.
The Tovbot is a small phone dock that uses your phone’s processor to move to the music. It contains multiple motors that help it wag its arms, head, and feet. The program Weinberg created also “senses” beat based on clapping and can find matching songs automatically. For example, you can clap out songs like Coldplay’s “Yellow” and it will find a matching tune.
Thanks to smartphone and cloud robotic controls, Tovbot is highly complex yet surprisingly affordable. The robot builds choreography on the fly and can even follow you around the room using your cellphone’s camera.
The Tovbot is a toy but it’s also the future of home robotics. Designed to be like an iPod dock that mated with a Furby, the dock points to an interesting future where robots embed themselves into our daily lives in ways that are unique and uniquely fun. Pop over to Kickstarter to pre-order yours today.