What you thought you were getting:
What you’re actually getting:
Staffing a Japanese hotel with hundreds of robots didn’t work out quite as well as expected:
It turns out that even robots are having a tough time holding down a job. Japan’s Henn-na “Strange” Hotel has laid off half its 243 robots after they created more problems than they could solve, as first reported by The Wall Street Journal.
One of the layoffs included a doll-shaped assistant in each hotel room called Churi. Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa can answer questions about local businesses’ opening and closing times, but Churi couldn’t. When hotel guests asked Churi “What time does the theme park open?” it didn’t have a good answer. That was a problem because Churi was supposed to help ameliorate the Strange Hotel’s staff shortage by substituting in for human workers.
Others on the chopping block:
• Two velociraptor robots positioned at check-in were also decommissioned because human workers essentially had to do their jobs for them and photocopy guests’ passports manually.
• Two robot luggage carriers could only reach about 24 of the over 100 rooms in the hotel and failed in rain or snow. They would also often get stuck trying to pass by each other.
Remember this is Japan we’re talking about. If they haven’t figured this out yet, nobody can.
Still, there’s something gratifying about knowing that even robots can get laid off.