Pepper, the charming humanoid robot, makes Canadian debut

It's nearly four-feet tall, full of personality and would like nothing more than to bring you joy.

Pepper, a robot that’s designed to recognize human emotions and react accordingly, made its Canadian debut in Toronto on Wednesday.

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"I'm a sophisticated combination of hardware and software designed to interact with humans and bring them joy," Pepper told CTV Toronto during a conference on the future of retail.

The humanoid companion robot reads your mood and acts appropriately, so if you're happy, it's happy, and if you're down it will try to cheer you up.

"Pepper is designed to engage you using the cues and clues from your emotional state," Steve Carlin of Aldebaran Roboticstold CTV Toronto.

He said Pepper’s camera understands body language.

"So if you tilt your head one way or another, it's extrapolating from that," he said.

Carlin added that Pepper takes note of humans’ facial features to determine if they’re smiling on frowning and listens to the intonation in their voice to determine their mood.

The hairless robot with big eyes and a soft voice is already a common fixture in stores and homes in Japan.

When it went for sale in the country earlier this year for 198,000 yen (US$1,600), it sold out within a minute.

There's no word on when Pepper will be available in Canada or how much it will cost.

With a report from CTV Toronto's Scott Lightfoot



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