Life-like android robot receptionist helps customers at Tokyo department store


Ap, Charlotte Krol, and video source APTN

April 20, 2015

Mitsukoshi Nihombashi department store shows off its new humanoid robot receptionist who helps guide customers to the building’s floors

A life-like android robot marked her first day at work as a receptionist at a major department store in Tokyo, Japan on Monday, greeting customers as they walked in.

The Mitsukoshi Nihombashi department store unveiled their new receptionist “Aiko Chihira” to customers and the media.

The department store said it hopes the robot will be an effective tool in giving directions to customers and boosting store campaigns.

Mio Sakai, who has been working as a receptionist for two years, said although the robot’s smile is “a bit stiff,” she feels honoured to work beside it.

Toshiba is developing the technology behind the robot’s body movements as well as syncing the movements of Aiko’s mouth and voice.

The system also uses technology developed by android pioneer Hiroshi Ishiguro at the Osaka University Intelligent Robotics Laboratory.

For now, Aiko can only read out programmed scripts, but soon she’ll be getting an upgrade in the languages she speaks.

The robot will serve as receptionist at the store’s entrance until Tuesday, after which it will be available as a guide on the store’s 7th floor until the 5 May.

This article was written by Charlotte Krol, Ap and video source APTN from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

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