Photo/IllutrationGuncierge Haro (c) SOTSU SUNRISE

An artificial intelligence-equipped communication robot modeled after Haro, a mascot from the “Gundam” animated series, will be released in 2018.

Guncierge Haro was unveiled at CEATEC Japan 2017, an annual international trade show focusing on IT technologies and electronics, held Oct. 3-6.

Haro first appeared in the original “Mobile Suit Gundam” animated series that started in 1979, before popping up in subsequent series.

The highlight of the item is that it can understand the context of the user’s speech. Its AI then analyzes the meanings and intentions of the user and responds with suitable sentences. The user can enjoy talking about the characters, lines and memorable scenes from the anime series.

Guncierge Haro’s eyes and mouth are installed with LED lights, enabling the robot to show its condition and expressions with colors and blinking lights. It can also sway back and forth, left and right, as well as turning toward the direction of the speaker.

By connecting it to a smartphone via Bluetooth, the robot can be used as an external speaker and an alarm.

Bandai Namco Studios Inc. came up with the product’s basic design. IBM Japan Ltd. developed a conversational AI specialized in “Gundam,” while Vaio Corp. took charge of designing its mechanisms and circuits and producing the robot.

The sales price has yet to be determined.

* * *

To learn more about the latest developments in Japanese anime, visit the official site of Anime Anime (http://animeanime.jp/).