“Upgrade in store: Cutting-edge hardware and generative AI enhances the ElliQ eldercare robot’s conversational abilities”

In some parts of the world (read: Japan, primarily), eldercare has been an important robotics focus for decades. In Tel Aviv, meanwhile, Intuition Robotics has been promoting a “companion” robot since 2016 or so. The latest version of the robot features design tweaks, more powerful hardware and — of course — generative AI integration. The company is exploring other avenues with generative AI, as well here. “One example is the ability to paint or write poems together, activities that contribute to cognitive wellness and creativity,” Intuition notes.

In many parts of the world (specifically Japan), the implementation of robotics in eldercare has been a significant area of focus for years. However, this technology is making its mark in other markets as well. One notable example is the home assistive system developed by Labrador Robotics in the United States. Meanwhile, in Tel Aviv, Intuition Robotics has been making waves since 2016 with their “companion” robot.

Earlier this year, ElliQ entered the market and has since found success through partnerships with assisted care facilities. The robot’s initial release was so impressive that it caught the attention of investors, resulting in a $25 million funding round for Intuition Robotics. With the support of Toyota’s Woven Capital growth funding, the start-up has now raised a total of $83 million.

The majority of this new capital has been put towards the development of ElliQ 3. This latest version boasts design enhancements, improved hardware, and the incorporation of generative AI – a common characteristic among products unveiled at CES, the annual consumer electronics event in Las Vegas.

ElliQ’s sleek design is a collaborative effort by renowned designer Yves Behar and his team. Behar’s studio is continuously involved in refining this latest generation. Notable changes include a one-third reduction in size compared to its predecessor, as well as a 1.3-pound weight reduction. Memory has also been expanded, and the on-board MediaTek octa-core processor has been updated. These hardware improvements are primarily aimed at enhancing ease-of-use and streamlining large-scale manufacturing for the company.

The utilization of generative AI is undoubtedly the major buzzword at CES – and is expected to be a major trend throughout the year. In the case of ElliQ, Intuition Robotics is using LLMs (Language Model Machines) to enhance the robot’s conversational abilities. After all, this is one of the system’s most noteworthy features. The company states, “Now, users can engage in virtually countless subjects in a more natural and detailed manner with ElliQ.”

Notably, Intuition Robotics claims that the new models will improve the conversation experience for both structured and open-ended discussions, while also strengthening the robot’s ability to understand requests based on context. The company is also exploring other areas where generative AI can be implemented, such as collaborative activities like painting or writing poetry. These activities are seen as beneficial for cognitive wellness and creativity. Additionally, sharing these creations with loved ones or the wider community of ElliQ users can promote social wellness, decrease feelings of loneliness, and increase a sense of belonging.

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Ava Patel

Ava Patel is a cultural critic and commentator with a focus on literature and the arts. She is known for her thought-provoking essays and reviews, and has a talent for bringing new and diverse voices to the forefront of the cultural conversation.

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