IBM Taps Watson for Robotics Innovation
IBM partners with SoftBank Robotics Holdings to create customer-assisting robots powered by the Watson cognitive computing system.IBM is tapping its Watson cognitive computing platform to advance the company’s robotics initiatives, partnering with SoftBank Robotics Holdings to offer a version of Watson for SoftBank Robotics’ Pepper robots. IBM and SBRH will tap into data and knowledge across the Internet of things to enable Watson-powered Pepper to make sense of the hidden meaning in data that traditional computers cannot comprehend – including social media, video, images and text. IBM said Watson represents a new era in computing where systems understand the world in the way that humans do: through senses, learning, and experience. At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week, IBM Chairman and CEO Ginni Rometty brought together the IoT, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) in a demonstration of the SoftBank Pepper robot. Rometty also announced that IBM will provide the global distribution and support for the Watson-powered Pepper robots, which are aimed at the global enterprise market. The Watson-powered Pepper robot under development would be equipped with core functionalities as well as a Watson software development kit (SDK) that allows developers and clients to tailor the interaction experience. IBM will give clients access to Watson APIs and various pre-packaged applications designed to address a variety of personal and professional needs.
“Today, the power of cognitive computing can be woven into any form factor. Our collaboration with SBRH on Pepper will allow a much broader audience to experience and tap into Watson,” said Mike Rhodin, senior vice president, IBM Watson, in a statement. “In terms of hands-on interaction, when cognitive capabilities are embedded in robotics, you see people engage and benefit from this technology in new and exciting ways.”