Is this a next-generation Segway? Toyota has begun testing its “Personal Mobility Robot” on public sidewalks in Tsukuba, Japan.
Called the “Winglet,” the new personal transport assistance robot can be ridden in a standing position and was created “with the aim of contributing to the development of a society where mobility is safe, freely accessible, and fun,” according to the Japanese automaker.
The trials are scheduled to run until the end of March 2016 with this year’s tests emphasizing safety and compatibility with pedestrians and other traffic. National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) personnel and Tsukuba municipal employees will use the Winglet on sidewalks to commute to and from work.
From 2014 onward, the testing will focus on aspects of functionality and convenience, including whether or not there will be demand for such a product. Approximately 80 people will be testing them.
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