It鈥檚 all well and good when artificial intelligence is running certain聽parts of our聽lives (we鈥檝e got NO problem with travel apps聽making聽up for our lack of聽direction), but this may be one step too far. AvatarMind, a company with offices in China and Silicon Valley, has just created the iPal, and according to the folks over at聽Mashable, this robotic companion will soon be making its way over to the US to be your kid鈥檚 new聽childcare provider.


AvatarMind says that this 鈥渘anny robot鈥 will have the banter聽of a four- to eight-year-old in order to better relate to your child. What鈥檚 more, its 鈥渂rain鈥 (learning engine) allows it to remember your kid鈥檚 likes and dislikes and use that knowledge to improve conversation. Since it鈥檚 super high tech, it can also keep an eye on the web to learn more about topics that your child is interested in.


And that鈥檚 not all: The iPal can also feel touch, listen to speech and determine emotion. If your child is unhappy, the iPal鈥檚 job is to cheer him or her up. If your child is happy, the iPal will be happy too.

While we鈥檙e not entirely opposed to it taking the place of oh, say, hours of mindless television for entertainment purposes, there are some things that are raising red flags: Like the fact that the iPal will automatically take pictures and video of your child, 鈥渇or safety and monitoring purposes.鈥 These images are obviously meant to help parents keep a watchful eye on their little ones, but we don鈥檛 love the idea of聽other people getting their hands on footage of our kids, should a mishap occur. Not to mention, various experts are worried about the psychological effects that long-term exposure of children to robots聽instead of humans could cause.

All that aside,聽this聽does聽have the potential to聽be the start of a beautiful robot-humanity relationship聽鈥 welcome to the future?

What do you think of robot caregivers? Tweet us @BritandCo!

(h/t Mashable, Photos via AvatarMind)