The name is a combination of the words “Love” and “Robot”. The robots are available for sale on their website however with a price of about 300.000 Yen plus monthly fees they are quite pricey for the average person.
However, this autumn a Café in Kawasaki opened where you can try out the Lovots while you are eating there. The Lovot Café is situated in the Plaza Lazona shopping centre which is directly connected to Kawasaki station. As the Café is quite popular it is recommended to make a reservation online, however, you can also try to get day tickets. You might have to line up early in the morning though.
Once you enter the café you will be seated and handed the menu. You have to choose one food item per person. Most are priced at around 2.000 to 2.500 Yen and include a free drink from the drink menu.
While your food is being prepared a staff will bring a Lovot to your table. Unfortunately, you cant choose which one. You can then play with it for about 30 minutes. I found it a bit awkward to play with it at the table as the little robot cannot sit on the benches on its own and topples over if you let go of it. I assume it is only constructed to be used on the floor. So you basically end up holding the Lovot all the time which makes taking photos not an easy task.
The Lovots like to be petted on the head and stomach and hold up in the air. They will show that through reactions. Each robot also has a name that you try calling. Then they are supposed to look at you but that did not really work out when I tried it.
When you food is brought to your table the Lovot will be returned to the charging station and you can enjoy your meal. The food items are all designed to look like Lovots and are very cute.
A visit to the Café is limited to 90 minutes. For the last 10 minutes, you can go to the Lovot stage in the entrance area of the Café and play with the Lovots that are currently on the stage. Here you can see how they move around and interact with each other.
I think a Lovot is a nice little toy for someone that can afford it but you can’t really compare it to a real pet, as the reactions it can show are quite limited and it also needs to be charged every 45 minutes according to the official website. I can’t say whether it gets used to its owner and grows more attached over time, as I only experience them for a short time.
For me personally, the high price would not be worth it but real pets are not cheap either and it might be an option for people that cannot have pets due to allergies or other conditions.