RealDoll made an ‘elderly male’ sex robot, but it’s missing something crucial

RealDoll's Robot Daddy made for a customer

Sex robot company RealDoll has announced that it created a ‘elderly male’ model for a customer, as it teased upcoming new features, such as sexuality settings for robots.

The Los Angeles-based company posted a photo of the senior citizen model, complete with silver hair and wrinkles suggesting decades of experiences beyond the workshop, on Instagram.

A RealDoll spokesman told the Daily Star that the model was a special build for a client. The company captioned the photo: “Okay we get daddy issues, but this might be a whole new level…”.

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RealDoll’s Instagram page, featuring the ‘elderly male’ model

While that silver fox machine appears to be a one-off, the company has revealed details about features set to appear in its standard models over the next few years.

In a recent Instagram video, RealDoll CEO Matt McMullen showed off a forthcoming ‘male’ model named Henry, whose sexual preferences with regards to gender will be able to be selected by the owner.

McMullen referenced the artificial intelligence (AI) of Harmony, RealDoll’s flagship ‘female’ sex robot, when discussing Henry.

“Initially we kind of created the Harmony AI with sort of a little bit bisexual flavour to it, but not defined as one [sexual preference] or the other,” he said. “What we’re going to do is further define it. So the person can actually select what is the sexual preference of your avatar, be that male or female.”

McMullen said that in its current stage of development, Henry was missing a crucial element to any ‘male’ sex robot.

“We also have to come up with that bionic penis that everyone’s reading about,” he said. He then joked: “We’re going to be working on some form of very epical insert for Henry, so that he’s able to lift trucks with his penis.”

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RealDoll CEO Matt McMullen (left) and Henry

While the tabloid press often publishes speculative articles about how sex robots could soon gain sophisticated abilities, even the most expensive models are currently far from sentient. Their AI systems often react to voices by giving basic recital responses, and there are not believed to be any sex robots with automated limbs on the market.

McMullen said that sex robots with moving arms and legs were still a way off being released.

He said: “We’re already starting to animate the body. The problem is, when can a body be animated and then be safe to throw into someone’s bed? A robotic arm that’s strong enough to lift the entirety of its silicone weight is pretty darn strong, and if something goes a little bit off with that, it could take your head off.”

“Nobody wants to get a full body moving robot out into the world more than I do, but there’s going to be probably a pretty good amount of safety that goes into that first,” he added.

McMullen said that technology RealDoll is likely to roll out wider first includes self-lubricating and heating robots. Via its Facebook page, the company has also alluded to technology that makes RealDoll sex robots’ artificial skin ‘glow’.

The 6th International Convention on Love and Sex With Robots (LSR), the academic-led conference on intimacy with robots, is set to take place as an online event in August 2021.

Organizers said that topics set to be covered include robot emotions, intelligent electronic sex hardware, robotics and electronic sex startups.

Read next: Sex robots 101: Everything you need to know about sexbots

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Jamie F
Jamie F

Jamie is a freelance writer, contributing to outlets such as The Guardian, The Times, The Telegraph, CNN and Vice, among others. He is also the creative force behind the Audible podcast Beast Master.

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