Sony’s AI-Puppy Gets Banned in Illinois

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Sony recently launched an AI-driven dog in the market. This dog, touted as a ‘companion robot’ faces a ban in Illinois. Sony is prohibited from selling the dog in Illinois due to Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA).

Sony’s puppy is called Aibo and costs approximately $2900 in other states. It is a companion robot which learns about its environment and builds relationship with people accordingly. Aibo uses an integrated camera fitted in its nose to identify people and respond to them.

However, this technology does not bode well with its Illinoi’s lawmakers. BIPA legislation in Illinois regulates data collection in the state including facial scans and recognition technology.

Sony has taken a backseat in Illinois, stopping the sale of Aibo. On the contrary, companies providing home security system in Illinois have adapted to the legislation. BIPA legislation also stopped the sale of face recognition technology in home security systems. Companies responded by disabling this feature to get approval.

Furthermore, the act legislates various data collection technology. These include iris scans, retina scans, hand scans, fingerprints, voiceprints, and face scans.

Privacy Laws Require Reconsideration 

Privacy is a growing concern worldwide. Individuals can face loss of dignity due to easily available morphed images online. Still, legislations like BIPA may be a little too overprotective for everyone.

For example, fingerprint recognition technology often goes along with a physical sensor in mobiles. So, hackers have limited access to data due to new layer of physical authentication. Additionally, this technology makes it easy to do a ton of things and saves valuable time for users.

So, a complete ban just for the sake of protecting the identity of users may stop innovative technologies dead in their tracks.

Technology continues to ask new questions from all of us. The answers may lie in letting users decide for themselves.

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