Lufthansa is testing a humanoid robot equipped with artificial intelligence at Munich airport to welcome passengers and answer their questions.
Standing at 120cm tall, ‘Josie Pepper’, which speaks English, will greet passengers into the non-public area of Terminal 2 at the top of the ramp leading to the shuttle connecting the main terminal to the satellite building. Lufthansa says the initial test phase is to determine whether passengers will accept the robot.
Josie Pepper’s ‘brain’ contains a high-performance processor with wireless internet access. This creates a connection to a cloud service, where speech is processed, interpreted and linked to the airport data. When a passenger asks the robot a question, it doesn’t deliver a pre-defined response. Josie’s IBM Watson Internet of Things AI capabilities mean she can answer each question individually, combining questions with relevant information to learn more precise replies.