Ambient Intelligence

Volume 7040 of the series Lecture Notes in Computer Science pp 324-329

“Maybe It Becomes a Buddy, But Do Not Call It a Robot” – Seamless Cooperation between Companion Robotics and Smart Homes

  • Claire HuijnenAffiliated withStichting Smart Homes
  • , Atta BadiiAffiliated withIntelligent Systems Research Laboratory, University of Reading
  • , Herjan van den HeuvelAffiliated withStichting Smart Homes
  • , Praminda Caleb-SollyAffiliated withBristol Institute of Technology, University of the West of England
  • , Daniel ThiemertAffiliated withIntelligent Systems Research Laboratory, University of Reading

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This paper describes the findings arising from ongoing qualitative usability evaluation studies on mobile companion robotics in smart home environments from two research projects focused on socio-technical innovation to support independent living (CompanionAble and Mobiserv). Key findings are described, and it is stated that the robotic companion, the smart home environment, and external services need to be seamlessly integrated to create a truly supportive and trusted system. The idea of robot personas is introduced, and based on our empirical observations, it is argued that the robot persona, rather than the physical embodiment, is the most important determinant of the degree of users’ acceptance in terms of users’ perceived trustability and responsiveness of the robot and therefore their sense of enhanced usability and satisfaction with such personal assistive systems.


companion robotics smart homes ambient assisted living independent living human-robot interactivity social robotics man-machine mixed initiative taking user-centred co-design UI-REF robo-humatics