What would you do with an extra year of free time? Go travelling perhaps. Accomplish some elusive goals maybe. A Japanese company, Seven Dreams, is offering you that extra time with its recently debuted Laundroid: the world’s first laundry folding robot.
Seven Dreams claims that the average human spends 375 days in a lifetime folding laundry, a truly banal task. Laundroid’s going to give you that time back. It’s a lazy college student’s – or really anybody who dislikes folding laundry – dream come true.
The Laundroid’s no clunky looking C3PO (sorry Star Wars fans). It’s a sleek, carbon-black tower designed to fit easily into your wardrobe. In a demonstration at the CEATEC consumer electronics show in Tokyo during October this year, a freshly laundered shirt is tossed loosely into the Laundroid’s chute. The chute closes up automatically and approximately four minutes later, a crisply folded shirt reappears.
Two breakthrough technologies are encased in the mysterious, armoured tower. The Laundroid contains image analysis technology that can scan your crumpled piece of laundry and determine what type of clothing item was put in. That way, the robot doesn’t end up folding your shirt into a sock ball. Seven Dreams then conjured up robotics technology that was sensitive and dexterous enough to handle your clothing and deliver it back to you in a pristine folded state.
Despite the cutting-edge technology, four minutes is a tremendously long time to fold a piece of laundry. Rest assured though. What we’ve seen so far of the Laundroid is only a prototype. Seven Dreams is working in partnership with Panasonic and Daiwa House, indicating movement towards a sleeker and more refined laundry system.
It’s estimated that pre-launch orders for the Laundroid will be available in 2016. Price points haven’t been announced, but we can only imagine that it’ll cost a pretty penny to install such a luxury appliance. For a year’s worth of free time though, it may be worth it. Depends on how much you hate folding your laundry.
A laundry folding appliance sitting quietly in your closet will soon become a hallmark of a more streamlined and minimalist lifestyle. Once the technology becomes commercialized and accessible for all households, the days of folding laundry will become part of the past.