We are in 2020 and so far it has been one crisis after another. What truly gives me hope is the time I spend with my dog. It is a moment away from the chaos and I often wonder if my dog knows what is happening around us? Do our pets have a sixth sense for disasters as they do for our emotions? Dogs are one of the most intelligent domestic companions to have and our furry friends truly form an inexplicable bond with us. Which leads me to this – what is the future of robot dogs?
Devoid of real feelings but with advancing AI, they will surely be smarter and more efficient. Dog bots will probably be a hybrid of a smart pet and a household assistant, I imagine features like security cameras for the eyes while still being sweet enough to bring you your newspaper and waking you up in the morning. Dog bots may have the benefit of being low maintenance, they won’t require mandatory walks on days when you’re sick or make you panic if you forget leaving their food out during emergencies. And as you can guess, they definitely won’t be troublesome during bath time.
So for the future, it actually sounds like a practical option because AI will be able to mimic a dog’s behavior closely but what about our conditioned behavior towards dogs? This conceptual Samsung dog bot replaces the dog’s features with a screen, so instead of a confused head tilt the face aka screen of the robot will show you a question mark. If the tech giants are to make a robot dog, using a screen as an interactive interface will save a lot more material than using plastic-like materials to replicate the real build of your pet. With the rapid rate at which AI is growing and the conceptual renders show, the dog bot will be able to chase balls and give you a leaping welcome when it senses your arrival. It is interesting how the design is so futuristic and yet when you look at it, you can tell it was made to resemble a dog. You may not even have noticed that the ‘tail’ is missing and yet our brains have evolved to associate emotion with robots.
For most of us, our dogs are considered family. The strong bond teaches us a lot about our own emotions, caring for another in all times, communicating without an actual language and the invincible power of puppy eyes! While technology can make robots so realistic that we start questioning what is real, something like a dog placing his head on your lap can never be replicated by a bot right? Let’s take a pawse (see what I did there?) and think about what life will be like if Samsung were to make a robot dog like this one.
Designer: Gaetano De Cicco