Behold Android Robo-C. If the claims of this Russian AI company prove to be true, then you can order a robot to be made in your own image and likeness, and send him or her to go to work at your job in your place.

Ok, so maybe we’re exaggerating and jumping the gun a bit. But Russian manufacturer “Promobot” did announce, in a statement they published this week, the release of their Robo-C humanoid android robot that will serve as a robot companion and “integrate into the business environment.”

On their website, Promobot claims that they can make the Robo-C in the appearance of any person. Check this out, from their website, that says it is now accepting orders:

From promo-bot.ai

The company “believes that a robot like this is capable of removing the barrier in human-machine interaction and replacing a number of employees in crowded places – post offices, banks, and municipal institutions.”

Here are the uses they suggest:

Promobot scope of work

With artificial skin and over 600 facial expressions that copy human facial expressions Robo-C moves his eyes, eyebrows, lips and facial muscles. Promobot says Android Robo-C can  also “keep a conversation going and answer questions.”

Newsweek reports Oleg Kivokurtsev, Promobot co-founder, told Russian state news agency Tass that they are planning to create 10 of these robots per month “with any appearance, for home and professional use.”

“Everyone will now be able to order a robot with any appearance, for professional or personal use. Thus, we open a huge market in service, education and entertainment. Imagine a replica of Michael Jordan selling basketball uniforms and William Shakespeare reading his own texts in a museum,”  Aleksei Iuzhakov, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Promobot, said in a statement on the company’s website. “We can build a linguistic model based on popular phrases of a particular person – the robot will communicate and answer questions by analyzing frequent expressions of the ‘original’ and using a certain context of knowledge of this person.”

The manufacturer says that they currently have several private orders for the Robo-C and are negotiating with companies interested in purchasing a robot for customer service.

In the meantime, here’s where Promobot has made headlines a number of times in recent years:

  • In 2016 the company claimed one of its robots kept trying to escape the laboratory, several media outlets suggested the story was likely a publicity stunt.
  • In January, the company claimed one of its robots was “killed” by a Tesla Model S outside the CES technology convention CES, held in Las Vegas. Wired reports this was likely a publicity stunt.
  • In April, Russia’s Rossiya 24 News used an Android Robo-C as a news anchor.

According to RT.com, the robot-maker plans to deploy up to a thousand service robots to different European countries by 2024.

Like what you read? Check out more from my WorkingNation blog, The Looming Robot.

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