Hopes that the tech industry was on the cusp of rolling out personal robots into homes are dimming now that several once-promising consumer robotics companies have shut down.

The latest casualty is San Francisco startup Anki, maker of the playful toy robot Cozmo. When it was released in 2016, the feisty pet robot that recognizes its owner’s face and zooms around on tank treads seemed like the start of a new wave of sociable machines.

That dream ended this week when Anki CEO and co-founder Boris Sofman gathered company employees to deliver the news that all of them would be laid off Wednesday.

FILE- In this Jan. 10, 2018, file photo, Anki Cozmo coding robot is on display at CES International in Las Vegas. A startup that tried to advance the dream of intelligent robots in the home with its toy robot Cozmo is shutting down. San Francisco-based Anki says it’s laying off its employees on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 after failing to raise enough money to keep the business going. It’s one of several high-profile makers of consumer robots to fold in the past year. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)
FILE- In this Jan. 10, 2018, file photo, Anki Cozmo coding robot is on display at CES International in Las Vegas. A startup that tried to advance the dream of intelligent robots in the home with its toy robot Cozmo is shutting down. San Francisco-based Anki says it’s laying off its employees on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 after failing to raise enough money to keep the business going. It’s one of several high-profile makers of consumer robots to fold in the past year. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

The demise of Anki and other consumer robotics companies also left robot enthusiasts wondering if the time has not yet come for such machines.

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