There's Finally a Robot That Can Fold Your Laundry for You
It's time to reclaim your Sunday from the demands of household chores. Meet Laundroid, a robot that folds your clothes for you.
Dreamt up by Seven Dreamers Laboratories, a Japanese manufacturing company, the folding bot uses image analysis to detect which piece of clothing you've placed in its clutches. After it figures out whether it's got a T-shirt or a pair of socks, the machine gets right to work.
Here's the end result:
According to the Japan Times, Laundroid made its debut in mid-October at the Combined Exhibition of Advanced Technologies, a technology trade fair held outside of Tokyo. The outlet also reported Seven Dreamers Laboratories had joined forces with Panasonic and Daiwa House Industries Co., a Japanese house manufacturer, to "jointly develop and sell the product."
The BBC reports that the robot is housed in carbon fiber casing and is the size of a regular wardrobe. When reporter L.J. Rich leaned in for a listen, she had this to say: "Whatever it's doing, it's very quiet!"
Seven Dreamers Laboratories claims that we spend about 9,000 hours — roughly 375 days over the course of a lifetime — folding laundry. Laundroid, it says, will free us up to spend those 375 days however we want.
Unfortunately for the company, however, it still takes the robot between five and 10 minutes to fold a T-shirt. Assuming an average laundry load contains around 25 pieces of clothing, we're looking at two to four hours of folding time. While you can easily take a nap or get some work done in that time, it's still far faster to do it yourself.
According to Japan Times, however, designers are currently trying to trim both Laundroid's time and size by its 2017 consumer release. Because we can't see what's actually going on inside the casing — Dobby*, are you in there? — and the companies have thus far refused to reveal their technology, we don't know what the robot's final form will be. But for now, we can dream of a day when the human time spent folding becomes as threadbare as your favorite sweatshirt's sleeves.
Watch Laundroid in action below:
Editor's note: Mic determined — after some research and a long internal conversation — that tasking a house elf with folding its master's clothes wouldn't technically liberate it from the home, like when Lucius Malfoy accidentally gave Harry's sock to Dobby in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.