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SoftBank’s Humanoid Robot Pepper Can’t Hold a Job, Gets Shelved


SoftBank has stopped production of its humanoid robot Pepper, after experiences showed that it had trouble holding a job. (Photo by Owen Beard on Unsplash)  

By John P. Desmond, Editor, AI Trends  

SoftBank has stopped production of its humanoid robot, named Pepper, and is downsizing its robotics staff from an acquisition in France.  

Some observers saw that in putting a human-looking robot on the market, SoftBank suggested that the robot could display more human intelligence than it was actually capable of, creating unreasonable expectations.   

Production of Pepper was stopped last year, according to a report from Reuters.   

SoftBank produced 27,000 units of Pepper. Chief Executive Masayoshi Son planned to make SoftBank the leader in the robotics industry, to produce human-like machines that could serve customers and help babysit children.  

Pepper’s origins were at Aldebaran Robotics of Paris, which SoftBank had acquired in 2012. Founded in 2005, the company ...


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