Meet the Newest Plastic: Artificially Intelligent Barbie

If you’ve seen Life Size, you’ve at one point fantasized about having a doll that could talk and turn into your betchy best friend. The ideal scenario is her transforming into a Victoria’s Secret model, like what happened to Tyra Banks in the movie, and to all of Taylor Swift’s friends IRL. This is probably not happening for the rest of us anytime soon (ugh), but we can now look forward to what’s basically the next best thing: Hello Barbie.

Hello Barbie is the newest version of Mattel’s classic toy, and she’s way more high-tech than the pile of dolls currently sitting in your closet. She’s artificially intelligent, which means she can understand verbal cues, respond to them and have back-and-forth conversations with people who play with her. Considering that’s more advanced than 60% of humans I know, it’s pretty impressive.

The way this works is through a microphone placed in her necklace, that gets activated when you press a button on her belt. When you speak into the microphone, Hello Barbie uses WiFi to connect to a server that has thousands of recorded responses, and chooses the correct one in less than a second. She’s kind of like Siri, but way hotter.

Another reason she’s cooler than Siri: she can remember shit that you say. So, if you tell her you’re “soooo over your ex” one day, and then say that you HU’ed with him two weeks later, she will call you out. Or at least that’s what she would do, if she were intended for emotionally unstable twenty year olds and not innocent children.

Despite not yet being available in stores, Hello Barbie has already been somewhat controversial. There are concerns that she’ll prevent children from branching out, and a general creeped-out feeling that robots are taking over the world. Nonetheless, she costs $75 and will hit the market in November, just in time for the holidays. Meaning, now would be the opportune time to get in touch with that younger cousin who is definitely getting this as a gift, so you can meet her yourself.


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