Facebook Wants a Robot to Be Your Personal Photographer

Selfie sticks are so 2015.

3. 7. 18 by Dom Galeon
USPTO/Victor Tangermann
Image by USPTO/Victor Tangermann

Smartphones, and the multitude of apps that go with them, have changed users’ photography habits. Taking a snap of everything one does has become almost ceremonial, followed by a mandatory Instagram post. Now, Facebook wants to get in on the photo-taking game.

The social networking giant received a new patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on Tuesday for a robot that balances on two or three legs. The self-balancing robot is designed to follow users around the house to capture those precious “Instagram-able” moments with its built-in camera, screen, and microphone.

Image credit: Facebook/USPTO.

Taking photos isn’t all this robot can do. It can facilitate video chats over Facebook. The patent also notes that the robot can carry cargo. Plus, it comes with a self-cooling system to control its temperature. Credits for this futuristic personal cameraman goes to Scott C. Wiley, a Facebook employee who perviously worked for a telepresence robotics firm.

Telepresence robots, which seem to be the inspiration behind Facebook’s new personal photographer, are essentially videoconferencing screens mounted on moving bases. Professionals use these robots to remotely attend meetings or galas,  projecting their faces on the screen and interacting with people as the robot perambulates around the room.

More Like a Personal Paparazzi

Facebook’s robotic cameraman works pretty much the same way; CNN notes that there’s vast potential for the new product. Assuming, of course, that this Facebook-branded robot makes it beyond just a patent and into actual production. It’s difficult to tell at this point, especially since telepresence robots haven’t really found a solid market yet.

Who needs a selfie stick if you have a robot that’s designed to take photos of you all the time? Still, having a robot that follows you around can be quite disconcerting. Sure, it might be able to capture your best candid moments while you enjoy personal and family time, but it might also not just stop there. Last we checked, nobody wants a personal bot-parazzi.

Having another in-home artificial intelligence devices that watches everything you do case could become problematic. It could just be plain bothersome, or devolve into an ethical nuisance. And what’s to say the paparazzi robot would keep your photos secure? After all, keeping its users’ personal data private isn’t exactly one of Facebook’s strongest suits.

For now, it might be best to just stick to taking our own photos when and how we want to.


As a Futurism reader, we invite you join the Singularity Global Community, our parent company’s forum to discuss futuristic science & technology with like-minded people from all over the world. It’s free to join, sign up now!

Advertisement

Share This Article

Keep up.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter to keep in touch with the subjects shaping our future.
I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its User Agreement and Privacy Policy

Advertisement

Copyright ©, Singularity Education Group All Rights Reserved. See our User Agreement, Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with prior written permission of Futurism. Fonts by Typekit and Monotype.