Toyota partners with preferred networks to build commercial service robots

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Toyota is looking forward to developing useful service robots which will help people in everyday life, making life a little easier for them. For this noble venture, Toyota is collaborating with the Japanese startup called Preferred Networks. The dual partnership was announced today, and it will utilize Toyota’s Human Support Robot (HSR) robotics platform.

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The robotic platform was created back in 2012 to design basic robots which will help people with their everyday work. The robots are usually equipped with one arm, a display, cameras, and a wheeled base and are capable of communication. This would not be the first time for Preferred Networks to work with Toyota’s HSR. In Japan’s CEATEC robotics conference in 2018, Preferred Networks demonstrated a robot which was programmed to clean a room fully autonomously, and this helping hand robot was created using the help of HSR.

The system could identify objects, respond to specific human instructions and, importantly, pick up and put down in safe manner objects it couldn’t define from its database. Toyota will provide Preferred Networks with several dozen HSR units for them to work on, and in the next three years, both the companies will collaborate on R&D. There will be a mutual flow of information, and sharing of the intellectual property. There will be no restrictions as to how either of the companies uses the result of their works.

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Toyota’s goal has always been to develop commercial home robotics which will work alongside humans to make their daily work a little bit easier and less tedious. Toyota’s research subsidiary, the Toyota Research Institute, is also devoted to make Toyota’s vision a reality. Toyota also revealed that it would bring out several robotics projects for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan. This will also serve as its field to conduct a bunch of tests for its projects.

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