Wondering what to get an elderly relative this year? Just in time for the holidays, toy company Hasbro comes to the rescue with a gift for Grandma. The toy company is debuting a line of robotic cats the company says are are "designed to bring comfort, companionship and fun for your elder loved ones."
Named Joy For All, the new robot pet line is pitched as a way to keep the elderly company. The robotic cats come in three color patterns, have "realistic" fur and make kitty noises and "familiar, cat-like actions" — which presumably don't include climbing the curtains or leaving "gifts" on the front steps. Billed as companion animals for seniors rather than toys, Hasbro's site refers to the animatronic animals as "companion pets." The retail price is $99.99.
Each robotic cat has sensors that respond to touch, Hasbro says. If you pet its cheek, it will nuzzle your hand. If you pet its back or the back of its head, it will purr or roll over for a belly rub. The robot cat will "sleep" if you're not interacting with it but it "wakes up" in response to touch or movement nearby.
As weird gifts go, it's not like taking Granny sky-diving, but it's a far cry from a new pair of slippers. (Maybe Hasbro could start working on a robot dog that could fetch those slippers for next year.)