Japanese electronics giant Sony is marking the year of the dog by bringing back to life its robot canine-packed with artificial intelligence and internet capability. Sony’s new “Aibo” dog is an ivory-white puppy-sized, 30 centimetre hound with flapping black ears and a wagging tail. Sony’s earlier aibo robodog was put to sleep more a decade ago-a victim of business restructuring-shocking fans of the digital pet. Sony rolled out the first-generation aibo in June 1999, with the initial batch of 3,000 selling out in just 20 minutes, despite a hefty price tag of 250,000 yen.
The company kept its “Aibo clinic” open until March 2014, but then-politely-told dedicated and loving owners that they were on their own, prompting retired Sony engineers to offer repairs.
The new aibo is launched in Japan in January but will not come cheap, priced at 198,000 yen.
Explore further: Sony’s Aibo seemed tough act to follow but stay tuned.