R2-D2 may have played a part in defeating the Empire in Star Wars, but it didn’t have a phone and its dance skills were terrible.
However, soon you could call your friends on your very own droid that’s small enough to fit in a backpack.
Sharp’s RoBoHon is a charming prototype robot that offers a lot of entertainment packed into its 7-inch (19.5cm) frame.
The gadget is an alternative to a conventional smartphone and has its own SIM card to make calls without having to be linked to a mainstream device. It also dances to music
It was first showcased in October and is now on display at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
It’s also possible to send emails and download apps using the device.
Sharp said its handset is a ‘phone in a human shape’ that ‘you feel like talking to… and also wants to know you’.
However, the bot’s internal hardware and operating system is currently a secret.
RoBoHan has a touchscreen on its back so users can control it, as well as responding to voice commands, so users wishing to make a phone call only need to ask. Similarly, it’s possible to ask the robot questions. It connects to the net to trawl sites such as Wikipedia to find answers and speaks the answers
MailOnline was shown the prototype in action at the Spanish congress.
In addition to answering questions, the diminutive droid can be asked to dance and it responds ‘look how good I am,’ before busting some smooth robotic moves.
Elsewhere, users can ask the droid to take their photo, with a tiny lens in between its eyes. Instead of showing a photo on the back screen, the droid bows so its head so it is partially facing the floor and projects it, which works best when the surface is white (pictured)
The projector can also be used to beam films, but the projection is not fantastic quality and the viewing angle a little strange.
Sharp’s spokesman said the company plans to put the robot into production, but said the release date and price is a secret.
He did concede it will launch ‘soon’ and may come to Europe as well as Asia.
While it may not be the most practical purchase, it is certainly more fun than an iPhone.