Introduced in Brussels last week, the latest in Honda’s Asimo series of ‘humanoid’ robots comes with dexterous, multi-fingered hands.
These, combined with object recognition technology, allow it to perform complex tasks, such as picking up a glass bottle and twisting off the cap, or holding a soft paper cup to pour a liquid without squashing it.
The robot is now capable of running at 5.6 miles-per-hour (mph) – 1.8mph faster than its predecessor.
It can now also run backwards, climb and descend stairs more smoothly, jump and hop on one leg continuously.
Honda said the latest Asimo was the next step in a journey to creating a robot for practical use in the home environment, or wherever assistance is required.
The Japanese manufacturer claimed Asimo can now recognise the faces and voices of multiple people speaking simultaneously.
While admiring Asimo’s abilities, Neil Williams, head of media at the British Beer & Pub Association, suggested most pubgoers would prefer their beer served by a Robert or Roberta, rather than a robot.
He said: “I’m not sure if Asimo’s general patter, would be up to much, and what about his proof-of-age checking?
“And at his speed, most bar staff would be able to run him down comfortably.
“Real staff are definitely the superior life-form.”