Behold: The World’s First Personal Robot Butler Is Here

This isn’t Westworld; Temi is a mobile, teachable AI assistant

By Kirk Miller

Temi
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04 October 2018

You can have your Alexa or Siri. We’ve been waiting for actual, locomotive robot helpers.

And the first has finally arrived: meet temi, now available for preorder.

A cross between an AI assistant and the android butler from Rocky IV, temi (short of “technology for me”) gives you smart home control and roving entertainment while also acting as an on-demand attendant. One that’ll apparently learn to intuit your preferences over time.

Standing a bit over three feet tall and weighing 26 lbs., temi has an autonomous mobility and navigation system (with 16 different sensors and cameras). Meaning: it’ll learn to recognize your face and avoid bumping into walls.

Temi

Looking somewhat like a Segway mating with a Stairmaster, temi does what most voice assistants can do: play music, order food, control your myriad smart home devices, etc. But the novel idea here is that your AI is finally mobile — don’t worry, it only comes to you when you call it (and it can’t climb stairs).

So, why get one? Isn’t this an Alexa on wheels? (Temi’s FAQ addresses that point a bit passive-aggressively.)

A few selling points:

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Teleconferencing: Temi will move, tilt and adjust to where you go, making hands-free video calling easier. As well, you’ll be able to control temi from anywhere in the world, so you can be virtually present at meetings, events and celebrations.

Entertainment: The robot features an on-the-go 10” HD video and music player designed by sound gurus Harman Kardon.

Social media: You can command temi take your photo or shoot video.

It’s a caddy: Temi has a tray with a built-in phone charger. While it’s not going to fetch your drink, it could maybe pass around hors d'oeuvres or bring you your keys.

The real wait-and-see is how other developers take advantage of temi’s open Android (heh) platform to create apps, games or skills.

Temi is available for preorder now for $1,499, with delivery between December and January.

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