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Asus' adorable Zenbo home robot will be released in 9 to 12 months

The Zenbo was announced on Monday at Computex, stealing some attention from the company's new laptop and smartphones.

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Asus made many exciting announcements on Monday at Computex, including the reveals of the ZenBook 3 and the ZenFone 3 range. Perhaps most surprising, though, was Zenbo, Asus' adorable home robot.

Zenbo will launch in the next 9 to 12 months, said Asus CEO Jerry Shen in an interview with CNET. It's a long time for sure, but announcing the product early is deliberate on Asus' end. It hopes to attract developers to work on apps for Zenbo, to have a robust ecoystem before the robot becomes available.

"If we didn't announce Zenbo, we wouldn't be able to get enough people interested. It's a chicken and egg situation," he said.

"The announcement timing's really tough, but when I spoke to Jonney [Shih, Asus' chairman], he thinks that if we have the momentum from the show, we will have more people join the program."

Similarly, IDC Research analyst Bryan Ma told CNET that Zenbo would only do well if it can get the software to make the robot viable.

"The first thought that came to mind when Zenbo rolled on stage is what kind of applications would be available. It may be cute, but the cuteness can only go so far without apps," said Ma.

When the Zenbo finally hits store shelves, Asus says it'll be able to move independently around the house, recognize faces, play games with kids, read stories, assist with cooking recipes, place phone calls and more.