Toyota unveils "walk-assist" robotic device

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Automaker Toyota has entered the long-term care market with a “walk-assist” device that makes it possible for disabled or elderly individuals to walk and get in or out of bed.

The device consists of a computerized metallic brace that users can strap onto legs that were once paralyzed or weakened by disease, the Associated Press reported. The brace allows the user to bend at the knee as needed to get up and down stairs, and to rise in and out of hospital beds and chairs more naturally.

The device's makers, who hope to commercialize the robotic device at some time after 2013, said that commercial models will be lighter than prototype versions, according to the AP. Click here to watch a video of the device in use.
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