Murata Manufacturing shows off self-balancing electric walking aid

Walking assistants of the future come in all shapes and sizes -- from exoskeletons to high-tech walkers -- and you can now also this electric walking aid from Murata Manufacturing to the list of possibilities. It's inspired by some of the standalone robots that the company has built and, much like the Segway, it's able to maintain its balance and stand upright on its own (with an extra set of wheels for some added security). Unlike traditional walkers, however, it requires virtually no effort to push, with built-in sensors able to detect how much the person's body is tilted, and how fast or slow it should move to keep up with them -- it's also apparently powerful to carry a person's luggage or groceries. As you might have suspected, however, it's still just a prototype, and the company isn't ready to say when it might become an actual product. Head on past the break for the company's recent demonstration at CEATEC.