When Bosch showed off their kitchen assistant Mykie at last year’s IFA and a few months later at CES, the social robot did little more than project a looped video suggesting how he might help out in the kitchen.
But at this year’s IFA, the little guy seemed all grown up as he showed off a voice-powered interactive demo of guided cooking. In the video captured below, you can see the user giving voice commands to navigate Mykie from step to step, watch recipe preparation instructions, search the web and watch videos of pro cooks preparing the food.
It’s an interesting evolution of Mykie in what is fast becoming a more competitive market for AI powered sous chefs. This year we’ve seen everyone from Buzzfeed Tasty to Whirlpool join others like the Hestan Cue and Cuciniale with guided cooking platforms, while Amazon and Samsung are creating what are voice-powered kitchen computers as extensions of their existing AI and app platforms.
By giving Mykie a name and cute little robot face, Bosch is betting consumers will embrace AI assistants with a little personality. Compared with the faceless Alexa, Mykie certainly seems warmer and one that might even become something of a “friend” in the kitchen. Of course, whether we as consumers will befriend the likes of Mykie is part of a longer-term question around just how realistic home robots and AI assistants become.
Bosch representatives at IFA were still vague on when we might see Mykie make it to market. With CES in just a few months, you have to wonder if the German appliance giant will reveal details in Las Vegas about when consumers might have their own kitchen assistant with a friendly face to help them make dinner.