Fribo is a New Robot Made for Lonely Young People

Image by @hurolife / Instagram

With the number of young people who live alone rising year after year, scientists are brainstorming about the ways to help them connect with each other and improve the interpersonal communication.

Long-term loneliness is not a healthy habit. We are social creatures, and prolonged isolation can have consequences on both physical and mental health.

That’s why the researchers from Korea have created Fribo, a home robot that’s different from other home robots. It’s not social, but it helps foster socializing with other people.

It creates a virtual shared space between a group of friends and can recognize activities such as coming home, turning on a light, opening a fridge, etc. It then informs the group about the latest activities and anyone interested can respond.

Fribo was presented at the ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction in March and here’s what one participant had to say about it:

“I can imagine what my friend is doing and I feel like we live in the same house, but in another room. It’s like sharing daily life activities with friends.”

“I usually wake up late in the morning,” said another, “but when I began to notice my friends getting ready early, I started thinking about starting the day earlier with my friends.”