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Sony could use a robot to turn your PlayStation into a fitness machine

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Those looking to get into shape might think about turning off their video game systems and heading to the gym, but if Sony’s recent patent application is indicative of a future product, your game console could be the key to getting that beach bod you’ve dreamed of.

A patent application, published on March 14 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, was filed by Sony Interactive Entertainment for a “Robot as Personal Trainer.” The device is a separate piece of technology that will communicate with either a “console or computer” and utilize a camera for fitness activities.

According to the application, the robot will be able to tell which fitness activity a user is doing and position itself to better capture their movements and location. The image will be displayed on a television, and data from the activities will be stored in the cloud. They will also be able to share information from their workout on social media if they wish, and the television will display information to help the user improve their posture in real time.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

The robot itself looks a bit like a trash can with a PlayStation Eye glued to the top, but it also has wheels on the bottom that will allow it to physically move around your activity space.

The vague “console or computer” denotation on the application’s image makes it seem like the robot could be compatible with multiple devices. If the PlayStation 4 ends its lifespan before — and if — the robot is eventually released, it could instead be compatible with the unannounced PlayStation 5. Given Sony’s support for the PlayStation Camera this generation, it seems like it would be the next logical step.

Curiously, it would seem that the approach to game consoles has flipped since the beginning of the generation when Microsoft positioned the Xbox One as an all-in-one entertainment device, complete with the Kinect sensor. Fitness applications and dancing games gave players the chance to get in shape without any additional peripherals. However, the Kinect has since been completely discontinued, and even using the Kinect on newer consoles requires an adapter that has also been discontinued.

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Gabe Gurwin
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Gabe Gurwin has been playing games since 1997, beginning with the N64 and the Super Nintendo. He began his journalism career…
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