IT’S HERE NOW, ROBOTS ARE BECOMING A PART OF OUR LIVES. THEY’RE ATTENDING TO OUR NEEDS IN A BLINK OF AN EYE.
Heard of the Ratio cafe in Shanghai, where a robot makes customers the perfect coffee? Or Boston-based Spyce, which offers robot-made healthy fast food? Now, it’s the intriguing Alibaba’s robot.
It looks right now as though robots are lining up to automate aspects of the customer experience.
The robotics industry is creating a wholesome experience for customers. Robots are becoming a part of easing customer experience(s) with brands and multiplying accessibility infused with speed.
China’s online shopping giant, Alibaba has just unveiled a robot that’ll serve guests in Country’s hotel. The robot is just under a meter tall and can move at one meter per second. It will be the ultimate assistant for hotel guests who want everything quickly at their fingertips. According to the General Manager of Alibaba AI Labs, Lijuan Chen, “It is the next step in the evolution towards smart hotels."
It can deliver meals and laundry to guests, and is equipped with Alibaba’s AI voice assistant AliGenie. Guests staying in hotels will be able to communicate with the robot via voice command, touch and hand gestures. The robot will in turn respond to them through AliGenie, the software behind Alibaba's smart speaker, Tmall Genie.
Alibaba claims that Tmall Genie is China’s top smart speaker, with over 5 million units sold since its launch in 2017.
“We are excited by this tremendous development that is helping us bridge the gap between guest needs and the response time that they expect,” said Lijuan Chen, general manager of Alibaba AI Labs. “[Our] robot is the next step in the evolution towards smart hotels. In addition, it is solving pain points in the hotel sector, such as enhancing service efficiency, with our leading AI technologies.”
After trial runs at hotels, Alibaba will assess its suitability for other areas, including hospitals, restaurants, and office services. Do you see how offline services are been reshaped with technology? Amazing!
I think that Innovations such as this will only instill in consumers’ expectations of automated convenience and speed (Just like the way Nigerians treat Uber & Taxify). But again, I also think automation needs to be applied in the right ways. Alibaba has targeted two aspects of a hotel experience: room service and laundry – to automate. Actually, I think it’s a great idea.
Here’s my question to brands who are interested in staying relevant as innovation dives like rocket: Which aspects of your customer experience would benefit from automation? Or which aspect of your customer experience shouldn’t be automated but seen as an experiences on its own?
You never (always) totally know what the consumer will accept or reject until you try.
Are you TINKING?