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Definition: social robot

A robot that supports a person's everyday life. Social robots range from slightly animated stuffed animals to intelligent android-like devices that function as real companions. Advanced social robots may be able to recognize family members and remind them of events. Virtual assistant capability and enhanced home security as they navigate the house may also be features. See social bot, AIBO, Jibo, Tesla Bot, household robot, artificial empathy, collaborative robotics and virtual assistant.

A Joy for All
A variety of cats and puppies are available from JoyForAll.com. Sensors respond to motion, touch and voice, and the pets make authentic sounds. The advertised target age range is 5 to 105.

MOFLIN Emotional Pet
MOFLIN grows emotionally by evaluating its surroundings. It was designed to be a loving pet for both young or old. (Image courtesy of Vanguard Industries.)

A More Serious Social Robot
This 4th-generation Care-O-bot was developed by the Fraunhofer Institute in Stuttgart, Germany to be a domestic companion in the home. (Image courtesy of Fraunhofer IPA and Phoenix Design, www.care-o-bot.de)