Friday, 3 October 2014

Teksta Robot Kitty

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy

Ever since our hamster Hammy has passed away, Abby has always wanted another pet, and apparently fish and shrimps doesn't really count ("They are Daddy's pets!"). There is a lot involved in looking after a pet though, so we wanted to make sure that she knows exactly what she is getting herself into first (she was too young when we had Hammy). 

Her dream kind of came true when we were sent a Teksta Robot Kitty to play with, which is just like a real pet but with minimum maintenance. If she can look after this kitty well, we might just grant her her true wish (if she still wants to).

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy

Teksta Robot Kitty (4th generation Teksta robot pet RRP £59.99, suitable for children aged 5 years+) is an 8 weeks old kitty (I heard that the more you train her the cleverer she gets) and comes with a robot mouse (3 x LR44 batteries included) and a fairly detailed, easy to follow manual. Kitty requires 4 x AA batteries that are not included. 

Kitty (Abby named ours Candy) is an artificial intelligence robot pet. She can meow, cry, whine and change her eye patterns to show you how she's feeling, and her sensors allow her to know if she's being petted, fed, talked to, played with and getting close to an obstacle while walking, as well as sensing the time of the day (if it gets dark she will go to sleep).

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy

Abby feeding and petting Candy
Note the robot mouse that is stuck on Candy's mouth
For basic training, your voice, hand gesture and her robot mouse will be sufficient enough to do several tricks:

Sniffing - by pressing something against her nose
Listening - she'll walk towards any sound
Eating - by placing the robot mouse against her mouth
Purring - when you stroke her head
Stand Up - using the robot mouse to make kitty stand up and paw at the mouse
Pouncing - either by using hand gesture or using the robot mouse

Converseby pressing the cogwheel button on her head and she will talk (meowing) to you when you talk to her
Dance to a Tune - by pressing the musical note button on her head once or twice (there are 2 song and dance routine)

Robot toy for children, Teksta Robot Kitty, animal toy
Note that Teksta Robot pets doesn't walk really well on carpets, especially thick ones.
You can do even more advanced training with Kitty if you have an iPad with iOS 5.0 or above, or tablets with Android 3.0 or above. Do note that some functions might not work with older devices (Our Samsung Galaxy Tab doesn't seem to function very well with Kitty, I guess it's time to upgrade!).

Using the tablet, you can:

- Make Kitty sing and dance
- Control the amount of meowing she does
- Control how active she should be
- Make Kitty do tricks with her eyes, tail and meowing
- Feed Kitty other kind of food
- Set alarm to make kitty alert you
- allow kitty to communicate with other Teksta Robot pets
- create new songs for Kitty to sing

and the most exciting thing

- teach Kitty a new dance move (including eye motions, movements and meowing at the moments you specify)

I was going to film some of Kitty's action, but then I found the following video and I know that I can't possibly show you how cool Kitty is better than this video. It's very true to the real kitty so I decided to embed the video here for you to see.

For a small kitten (8 weeks old too!) she's one clever babe! Initially I thought that the robotic movement noise (aren't movies realistic? Robots really do make those noise!) would be distracting, but I think the noise is more enhanced in videos, as it's actually not too bad in real life.

Candy is really adorable (in the loveliest colour too!), and Abby couldn't conceal her excitement when we opened the parcel. Initially she thought that it was a puppy but as soon as she saw Candy, she made a little jump and said "OOoo! It's a Kitty!! Yayy!!"

Abby learned how to play with Candy really quickly, and she was so excited when Candy responded to her when she said "Come here Candy!". Even Clay is in love and will find every opportunity to play with her.  Both children are impressed with what Candy can do, and after playing with Candy for a while, we started treating her like she's a real pet. I think it's because she responded so well to our touches and when we talked to her.

Our main problem with Candy is that we couldn't really understand what emotions she is expressing with her eyes (we only know what it's like when she's happy). I found the above image for Teksta Robot Puppy on the Internet, but I'm not sure whether it'll be the same for Kitty, so we'll just use it as a guideline for now, but I'm sure we'll get to know her better in time.

The great thing about Teksta Robot Kitty is that you don't have to clean, walk or potty train her, nor do you have to worry about fleas, hairballs, disease and illness, accidents when she's out and about and starvation (you do have to feed her at least once a day to keep her happy but it's super easy and there won't be any dead bodies on your carpet!). Ok, I wouldn't really say that you should replace a real pet with a Teksta Robot pet, but it's definitely a great way to train children to look after a pet and be responsible for them, instead of jumping straight to a live pet and you the parent have to do all the training and maintenance.

If your child is wishing for a pet this Christmas, why not consider giving them a Teksta Robot pet instead? They also have 3 types of puppies and a T-Rex too!