Saturday, September 26, 2009

Introducing NAO, a nice little robot

Any Disney fan loves robots, specially in a WDI attraction, so to end this week-end here is a cute little one called NAO. The kind of robot you might see at Epcot Innoventions.

NAO was designed by a french team of robotics fans and i think they did a pretty good job on this 23 inches tall robot. And i like its design. More about NAO from the press release: "Project Nao, launched in early 2005, aims to make available to the public, at an affordable price, a humanoid robot with mechanical, electronic, and cognitive features, based on those of the prototype (see graphic below)

Featured with an intuitive dedicated programming interface, Choregraphe, the entire family will be able to enjoy the robot experience. Yet, full of new technologies, our robot will also satisfy the demanding techno-addict’s expectations.

Designed for entertainment purposes, Nao will be able to interact with its owner, with evolving behaviors and functionalities. Additionally, the user will be able to teach Nao new behaviors using a computer with Wi-Fi connectivity. The behaviours creating software is designed to fit any users level: from graphical block editing for beginners to code for more skilled users. The possible behaviors are limited only by your imagination!"

Allright, all this sounds good, alas there is a little problem: NAO's price! Aldebaran Robotics, the company which created NAO intend to sell it for...$3000! Frankly, it's too expensive. I'm sure it's a sophisticated little robot but they should find a way to sell it at a cheaper price. WowWee robots are sold for a 10th of this price...

However, as the best is to see NAO in action, have a look at the two videos below!

Pictures and videos: copyright Aldebaran Robotics


Anonymous said...

As soon as I am unable to pick up my rubber duckie and have $3,000 to waste I'll be sure to give this company a call.
Meanwhile I'll just play ball with other humans and talk to my friends.

Anonymous said...

Very impressive. This cute little robot is fun to watch. Nice to see that robotics is moving forward. I would love to have NAO at home, although I do prefer Wall-E...

hwork said...

Hey Alain,

I actually worked with a team that competed with Naos internationally in a sport called RoboCup. This year, they finished second place worldwide!

Check out their website/blog/videos over at:


GregC said...

Why doesn't Aldeberan change their business model with developers? I would gladly develop for this robot, but I just don't have $3000 to give and with the full version for non-developers being close to $16000:

I have no hope that they will ever sell in large quantities. As with super expensive things in the past, I'm sure both people who own one, love them.

While the Nao is certainly impressive technologically, it is not priced aggressively enough to compete. So long as cheaper robot platforms exist then they will continue to prosper and eventually surpass the Nao because they will have more developers and more people who have their product.

Aldeberan cannot possibly be spending $16000 on each of these robots. This is enough to build a small car. Aldeberan would make more money if they would reduce their unit price to something more attractive. I guarantee you everyone would want one. The Nao is cute and is undeniably cool.... it's just not priced right.

Sincerely, Greg C.