January 13, 2011 | by Michael Heller
Two Japanese companies, RT Corporation and Brilliant Service have teamed up to bring Android’s lovable robot to life, and powered by Android itself. The robot is named RIC Android, which was a bit of a disappointment to me. I was really hoping that the robot would be named “Robot 1-X”. The hardware was built by RT Corp. while Brilliant Service developed the software.
RIC Android weighs about 31 pounds (14 kg), and is just under 4 feet tall (120 cm), but can extend to 5’3″ (130 cm) when it opens its mouth to show off its on-board controller. It also can move its head and arms, and has 10 points of articulation in its hips and legs to keep it stable while it is walking across uneven ground.
No word on what version of Android is behind the RIC, but the dev pictures show them using a G1 while loading up some software. RT Corp. actually has a long-term vision for the robot, and wants to put it into classrooms as a kind of teacher’s aide, or in your house as a “life-blogging” tool so you’ll never have to record anything again, RIC will do it for you.
RIC has been in development since mid-2010, and was shown off at the Google Developer Day in Tokyo.