Monday 28 November 2022

SoftBank opens ‘robo cafe’ with humanoid robot Pepper at Tokyo stores

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TOKYO – Customers at SoftBank Group Corp’s three stores in Tokyo can enjoy free coffee served by the telecommunication giant’s humanoid robot Pepper, capable of remembering customers’ faces and their preference of coffee for their next visits to the stores.

SoftBank has begun a trial service that will run through Aug 2 and is considering the full-scale “robo cafe” service, aimed at entertaining smartphone buyers while waiting.

During a press event held at the SoftBank Ginza store on Friday, Pepper asked a customer, “Would you like a cup of coffee while waiting?”

The simulated customer selected the amount and thickness of coffee using the touch screen on Pepper’s body.

Customers can also register themselves as “friends” with the touch screen while coffee is being brewed.

Pepper will memorize the faces of the registered friends as well as their favorite coffee so it can quickly offer their favorite coffee when they visit the stores next time.

The robot can recognize different human faces with a system developed by Microsoft Corp capable of detecting 27 spots on a human face.

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