Yuki-taro manages to do something that not many bots can boast of. It manages to eat up snow and poop out little bricks of snow. Disgusting, ain't it! But it manages to do all this and still looks as cute as Pikachu!
It is winter time in Japan and at some places, Niigata for instance, it can snow very heavily. Scooping up snow is a great trouble for the elderly and this drove five Nigata-area organizations to design this handy robot.
"Yuki-taro, the friendly snowbot," equipped with lots of high-end gizmos like a GPS positioning sensor, video cameras (one each for its two eyes), and of course an internal snow-block maker. The last of these will be a treat for any kid in Japan. Yuki-taro measures 160 x 95 x 75 cm (63 x 37 x 30 in.) and weighs 400 kg (880 lbs).
The robot addresses a very real problem i.e. what to do with snow. Shoveling is no good cause it only leads to a messy pile. So Yuki-taro converts the snow it scoops into neat bricks (60 x 30 x 15 cm) that are comparatively easier to pile up. These can also be stored for use in summer as a source of refrigeration.
It isn't available this winter since it is only a prototype at present but the creators believe that they'll be able to deliver a marketable version in 5 years that'll cost less than a million yen. And do expect it to be attached with little years to make transition into a pokemon complete!