CeBIT: 'Telepresence' robot makes waves at tech fair

Mar 02, 2011
The robot "Jazz" by French company Gostai is pictured at the CeBIT, world's biggest IT fair, in Hanover, central Germany. "Jazz" is a shiny white humanoid robot that its makers believe could transform business meetings and reduce the need for long-distance travel.

Many visitors walking around CeBIT, the world's biggest high-tech fair, have found themselves bumping into "Jazz", a "telepresence" robot also ambling around the vast expo.

Created by French firm Gostai, "Jazz" is a shiny white that its makers believe could transform business meetings and reduce the need for long-distance travel.

Controllable by anyone with access to the Internet via a laptop or even smartphone, "Jazz" projects its user's presence, showing his or her face on its own "face" and speaking in its user's voice.

Launched only two months ago, "Jazz" could easily deputise for a manager in a business meeting, or tour a factory or shop floor, both recording and beaming back what it sees to its user, said Gostai employee Segolene Roche.

"The main advantage over is its mobility," she told AFP.

It can run for five straight hours -- at around four kilometres (2.5 miles) per hour -- without needing to be recharged and returns to its charging station when it runs out of juice.

Visitors walk past the robot "Jazz" by French company Gostai at the CeBIT, world's biggest IT fair, in Hanover, central Germany. More than 4,200 tech firms from 70 countries are expected to attend this year's CeBIT, with many of the big names that stayed away during the global financial crisis returning to Germany.

A sleeker, slightly more sinister, black version is also available to serve as a robot security guard.

This , quiet and faceless, can be programmed to prowl around a factory or warehouse and alert the authorities if it detects people up to no good.

"Jazz", which is making its debut at an international tech fair, is yours for 7,900 euros (10,900 dollars). Its beefier security counterpart will set you back 1,000 euros more.

More than 4,200 exhibitors are showcasing their latest wares at the , which is expected to attract some 350,000 people before it shuts up shop on March 5.

Explore further: European teams demonstrate progress in emergency response robotics since Fukushima disaster

Related Stories

CeBIT: Gadgets galore at world's top tech fair

Mar 02, 2011

A Shakespeare-reciting robot, the world's most merciless alarm clock and "intelligent" cocktail shakers were among the gadgets wowing visitors at the CeBIT high-tech fair on Wednesday.

World's biggest IT fair shoots for the clouds

Feb 27, 2011

The world's top high-tech fair opens Tuesday with the IT industry in bullish mood, preparing to wow visitors with head-spinning futuristic gadgets and the latest in 'cloud computing' technology.

Recommended for you

Robot walker for elderly people in public spaces

17 hours ago

Elderly people with walking difficulties are often intimidated by busy public places. This led an EU research project to develop a robot walker to guide them around shopping centres, museums and other public ...

Standard knowledge for robots

May 20, 2015

What do you know? There is now a world standard for capturing and conveying the knowledge that robots possess—or, to get philosophical about it, an ontology for automatons.

A folding drone that's ready for takeoff in a snap

May 20, 2015

Thanks to the power of its rotors, this fold-up quadrotor extends its articulated arms and takes off in a fraction of a second. This prototype will be viewed by specialists on May 25 at the International ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.