As we know, human-toy interaction has been a challenge for toymakers for quite some time. However, it looks like Google has a much greater plan for them. Unfortunately, they did not think at Barbie dolls or some action figures. The tech giant declared that its R&D department is working on internet-connected toys capable of controlling clever home appliances and sensing movement. Google recently published a patent detailing such a device.
The toy will be equipped with a large variety of speakers, sensors, microphones and cameras. This means that the toy will be capable of listening and communicating if someone is entering the home, much faster than any remote computer servers.
However, even if the idea is very good, the feedback wasn’t so enthusiastic. Several people considered this to be one of the creepiest ideas from Google. They said that it is weird to stay in front of the TV and if you don’t like what it is on, to turn around and ask the toy to change the channel. Thinking more about this, probably what makes it creep are the toy’s movement-sensing abilities.
Due to its multitude of sensors, the toy should, probably, be able to walk and if you are looking at it, the toy will definitely respond and it will look back to you. However, a spokeswoman for Google has not declared clearly if the product will be developed and put to sell. “We file patent applications on a variety of ideas that our employees come up with,” she said. “Some of those ideas later mature into real products or services, some don’t. Prospective product announcements should not necessarily be inferred from our patent applications,” she added.
These toys will be able to control anything from lights, thermostats, motorized window curtains, to DVD players, television and radios. “To express interest, an anthropomorphic device may open its eyes, lift its head and/or focus its gaze on the user,” declared Google’s director Richard Wayne DeVaul. To be mentioned that the idea also originated from him.
Despite its interesting concept and idea, the toy could also be considered a threat to people’s privacy, because it is capable of logging the activity of users and recording conversations.