Tamagotchi 2K16? This electronic cat takes robotic animal companions to the next level

Takara Tomy's Hello Woonyan gets up to all sorts of feline business, and can also sing, dance and change its eye colour to show its mood.

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If you're in the market for a kitty but don't believe in your ability to take care of a living creature, don't worry -- Japan has you covered.

Tokyo-based company Takara Tomy brings us the Hello Woonyan, an electronic cat with a surprising number of tricks for such an adorable cutey.

The electronic feline purrs when being pet, will chase after your hand and toys, and race around the house. It can pull off some tricks that real cats can't too, such as singing, dancing and, for some reason, barking like a dog. Woonyan also changes its eye colour to indicate its mood, as opposed to real cats -- who stare at you judgementally until you feed them.

It's able to freely roam around your house thanks to touch and motion sensors in its head. There's also technology in each of its four wheeled feet, with the cat able to perform different tricks to earn its owner's affection. The toy can be charged up with its dedicated AC adapter, one thing that you should never try with an actual cat.

Electronic companions have been popular since the first Tamagotchi came out in 1996. Japanese companies have been leaders in fusing modern technology with cute, accessible hardware -- like MJI Robotics' egg-shaped desk companion and Sony's much missed Aibo. It's not Takara Tomy's first rodeo either, with the firm having already released the Hello Zoomer electronic dog and the Hello Dino robotic dinosaur.

Hello Woonyan will officially release on April 28 in Japan. It'll cost 19,440 yen, which converts roughly to $170, AU$230 and £120 -- in the same ballpark as buying a real cat.

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