To check and validate the real world effectiveness of the Walking Assist Devices, Honda started to lease about 100 units of the device to different hospitals in Japan. This announcement made Honda to stand in the list of other exoskeleton manufacturers. Other exoskeleton devices that are available in the market includes Argo Medical Technologies’ Rewalk, Panasonic’s Activelink Powerloader, Lockheed Martin’s HULC, Ekso Bionics EKSO, Cyberdyne’s HAL, Raytheon’s XOS2, REX Bionics REX and RB3D’s Hercule. The Honda’s Walking Assist Device took 14 long years in its production and tests on workers as worker assist device. The Honda’s Walking Assist Device will be used for the rehabilitation practices and physical therapy. The focal point of the engineers of Honda’s Walking Assist Device is to help and monitors injured, aged and disable people. The purpose of offering this device to hospitals in Japan is to get real world feedback about the device to make it more realistic and effective.
Honda used “Cooperative Control Technology” similar to the ASIMO, a humanoid robot and the device will have a connection with control computers that will help the doctors in understanding symmetry of the timing of the movement of legs. The device will also help the person to walk in a firm, longer and easier way. The R&D department of Honda started work on the development of the Walking Assist Device in 1999. The entire setup weight less than 2.4 kg/ five pounds and will get power from a lithium ion battery pack that will power the setup for about 1 hour if charged completely. The design and use of this device is very simple and easy and the person has to wear it using belts connected to them. This is a good achievement of the company in personal mobility, however, it is not clear that whether Honda will offer this device for general public or will introduce it overseas.