Honda and Softbank: Talking cars that can read a driver’s emotions.

Speaking at an event in Tokyo, Softbank and Honda described a future in which Honda cars could speak and interact with their drivers via cloud-based technology based on SoftBank’s “Pepper” robot, a life-sized robot that can read human emotions. “Imagine if robots, with their super intelligence, devoted themselves to humans,” Son said. “And imagine that cars themselves became supercomputers or robots one day. Honda will be the first to adopt this technology.” The two companies would research ways to assess a driver’s speech, along with other data compiled by vehicle sensors and cameras, to gauge the driver’s emotions and allow the vehicle to engage in conversation.  As a result, vehicles would be able to offer advice and support to drivers, such as during challenging driving or parking situations, while also providing company to drivers on long, solitary trips.