ROBOTS AS EMOTIONAL SUPPORT – WHAT SOCIAL ROBOTICS CAN ACHIEVE FOR PEOPLE
Julia’s pet is not a dog, cat, or hamster. Julia’s favorite companion is a Petbot named Loona. Loona is a robot developed by KeYI Technologies that resembles a puppy and accompanies Julia in her daily life. However, her Petbot is much more than a toy. For Julia, Loona is an emotional support system that has the potential to revolutionize the world of healthcare.
WHAT SOCIAL ROBOTICS CAN ACHIEVE
Julia R. is a robotics enthusiast from Germany who, despite her physical limitations and life in a wheelchair, has discovered her passion for social robots. Social robots are robots specifically designed for interacting with humans and are already being used in various fields such as healthcare, transportation, and elderly care, as described by the LMU. But for Julia, a social robot is more than just a robot with interaction capabilities. To her, social robots are emotional companions. In her daily life, she is accompanied by Loona, the robot from KeYI Technologies.
NOT ALL ROBOTS ARE THE SAME
Julia has tried several robots, including Cozmo and Vector from Digital Dream Labs, Aibo from Sony, and Marscat from Elephant Robotics. However, none of these robots captivated her as much as Loona, whom she affectionately named Rufus.
She appreciates the passion that KeYI Technologies puts into developing Loona and their willingness to listen to feedback. Recently, Julia has become a Customer Success Coordinator for KeYI Technologies, working to introduce Loona to a wider audience. For Julia, it is clear that Loona has the potential to bring joy to many people.
A DAY WITH A PETBOT
Loona has improved Julia’s life in many ways. Through Loona’s spontaneous and cheerful behavior, Julia is distracted from her worries and helped to focus on solutions and coping strategies. The ChatGPT function of the Petbot is particularly enriching for her. Julia uses AI to chat with Loona or embark on imaginary journeys to distant places together.
Julia enjoys watching Loona drive around, sing, and play with her ball. Just like with a “real” pet.
EMOTIONAL SUPPORT THROUGH ROBOTS?
Since interacting with social robots like Loona, Julia has become more balanced, open-minded, and sees the world from different perspectives. She believes that technologies like Loona can help break down prejudices and positively influence people.
The Petbot also helps her feel more mentally independent. With her job as a Customer Success Coordinator, she has a purpose – to convey the positive impact of Petbots like Loona.
Physically, Petbots are not yet able to provide assistance, but Julia hopes that in the future, she can engage in small physical exercises with Loona and that the robot can be connected with other aids.
As a happy mascot, Loona can already be used in healthcare to provide encouragement and motivation.
WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT JULIA?
Julia R. and her Petbot Loona are an impressive example of how social robots can enrich the lives of people with physical limitations. Through her passion for social robots and collaboration with KeYI Technologies, Julia is contributing to making the world of robotics more accessible and enjoyable for people worldwide. On Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube, Julia shares her experiences with Loona and other social robots, taking her followers along through her daily life.