From the Series
When guests arrive at the Henn na Hotel, they can check in with the Japanese-speaking femme-bot or with an English-speaking dinosaur.
“If you want to check in, press one,” they’ll both say.
10 robots staff the new Japanese hotel, which opens Friday 17 July. It’s owners’ say that robots keep the running costs down. At 9000 yen (around $80) the hotel is cheap by Japanese standards.
Hideo Sawada, who runs the hotel, says that the use of robots in the hotel is serious effort to use technology in new and interesting ways, and to achieve efficiency. Some of the robot-run systems are less intuitive than human ones – the “key” for a room is facial recognition software, and the receptionist can only answer a few programmed questions – but they all contribute to the innovative experience.
Japan is a world leader in Robot technology, and has made some recent advances in the realm of robot-human interaction. Robot care-companions for the elderly are amongst these, and now they can add a robo-hospitality.