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'RoboHon' is the tiny robot smartphone you never knew you needed

Mat Smith, @thatmatsmith
October 5, 2015
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Watch the teaser video after the break. Skip along then come back to me. Sharp's RoboHon is so damn adorable, I can't look away from this kawaii singularity. This robot smartphone may be cute, but it's also jammed full of skills and features. A projector, articulated animated arms and legs, talkative but in a charming Japanese robot sort of way. You're old, Pepper the robot. There I said it.

When the rest of a phone is a gesture-prone robot, other specifications fade into the distance, but Sharp's given us most of the details. It's not light (390 grams), or small (at 19.5cm tall, almost eight inches), making it the antithesis of how all other smartphones are evolving. There's WiFi and LTE to make it work like a phone should, and a tiny two-inch 320 x 240 screen on its back -- because you should be looking at its cute lil' face, silly. Inside there, there's cameras for facial recognition, and voice recognition built-in too. Sure, both are features found in existing smartphones, but they're not robots. Don't you get it yet?

The RoboHon (that's a Japanese katakana-ized contraction of robot phone) can walk, sit down, get back up, dance, and raise its arms when it's got something to tell you. It'll be your talkative alarm clock, memo taker and text message reader and do all sorts of Siri things with a reduced level of creepiness.

Hello, it's the bizarre Japanese anime future calling. Are you going to pick (it) up? Because it's going on sale in Japan in the first half of 2016.

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