Engineers at Tokyo-based company Seven Dreamers started developing a laundry-folding robot called Laundroid in 2005, and now, there is finally a robot to show off at CES 2018.
We haven’t seen it in person yet, but we spoke with Seven Dreamers CEO Shin Sakane for a preview. The idea is: You drop clean, dry clothes into a box in a pretty home appliance, and then several hours later you can collect the folded, sorted items.
“Soft material like clothing is one of the hardest problems for AI even now,” Sakane says. “Laundry folding seems like an easy task but it’s actually very hard, so that’s why no one has ever done it before.”
Washing machines and dryers treat each item of clothing the same, but folding requires the appliance to identify garments and be able to physically fold them.