Poochie, a robotic toy dog developed by Sega Toys, interacts with owners through a translation system
Robotic pets have been part of the vision for the home of tomorrow since the early 20th century. A family dog who never has to be fed, taken for walks, or ever has any accidents on the carpet. A dog who speaks instead of barks. While that technology is still a bit out of our research, Japanese toy company Sega Toys has created their own version of a mechanical man’s best friend.
Poochie is a small robotic toy that moves and reacts to stimulus, much like a real dog. The pup reacts differently when the person touches different places, like its nose, back and tail. The dog can also connect to an owner’s Nintendo 3DS hand-held gaming system via WiFi. From there, they can download an app to the device that translates their Poochie’s barks into Japanese, play mini-games like racing and skiing. Users can also feed their pet digital food and groom them electronically. The only issue is that without the Nintendo 3DS, half of Poochie’s available functions are unusable, and the gaming system itself is rather expensive.
Poochie is only available in Japan, and for 6,000 Yen (or around $60), this robotic pet is on the pricier end of most toys. Still for a toy this smart, the extra cash might be worth it for kids in need of a furry companion but unable to get one due to allergies, living situation or because their parents don’t want the hassle of dealing with a misbehaving puppy.