Qoobo, a Robotic Pillow with a Wagging Tail, Is Coming to SXSW®
Yukai Engineering readies for sales in Japan and the U.S.
following Kickstarter and CES® successes
TOKYO (March 2, 2018) – Can’t have a pet because of allergies or a busy life?
Yukai Engineering Inc., a Tokyo-based robotics startup, has developed Qoobo to solve that problem and is bringing it to Southwest® (SXSW®) Conference 2018 in Austin, Texas, from March 9-13. Qoobo is a robotic pillow with a cat-like tail that wags and swings in reaction to how you stroke, pat and rub it. Yukai Engineering will demonstrate Qoobo during SXSW Interactive Festival Tradeshow.
Qoobo is intended as a tool to provide comfort to those who cannot own pets, including apartment-dwellers and seniors. It became one of the most talked-about gadgets on the internet following its unveiling at CEATEC Japan 2017, netting more than 10 million online video views. The Kickstarter campaign for Qoobo raised 12,360,156 Japanese yen (approx. $110,000 USD), or 247 percent of the goal amount, from 908 backers. The product has continued to attract attention at CES 2018 and other events. Yukai Engineering is now accepting pre-orders in Japan and the U.S. for expected delivery in fall 2018. Qoobo is priced at $93 USD each.
WHAT: Yukai Engineering exhibit of Qoobo at SXSW 2018 Interactive Festival Tradeshow
WHEN: March 9-13, 2018
WHERE: Austin Convention Center, Exhibit Halls 2, 3, 4 – Booth 1420 (The exhibit booth is operated by Hakuhodo Inc., which has assisted Yukai with the development and branding of Qoobo.)
Qoobo Website: http://qoobo.info/
Qoobo Preorder: http://shop.qoobo.info/
Power: Rechargeable batteries
Battery Run Time: 8+ hours
Weight: 1,000 g
Dimension: W330 x H160 xD 540 mm
Origin of the Name
Qoobo combines “queue,” which means the tail in French, and the word, “robot.”
Story Behind Qoobo
Yukai Engineering decided to develop Qoobo when a staff member moved into an apartment that did not allow her to keep her cat. Drawing inspiration from an animal’s tail, Yukai created a robot that can comfort humans in just the way cats and dogs would. The company’s engineers studied the animal tail and created a mechanism that closely mimics its movements. In the designing process, the team also paid extra attention to the robot’s weight, size and texture so it would feel just like petting an actual animal when you have it on your lap, stroking it.
Yukai Engineering is a robotics startup that develops and sells products befitting its slogan: “Make the world a fun place to live in with robotics technology.” Yukai’s award-winning products include Necomimi, a headband with fake cat ears that move in sync with the user’s brain waves (selected for the Time magazine’s “The World’s 50 Best Innovations 2011” list), and BOCCO, a communication robot that keeps family members in touch with each other.