Artificial intelligence

AI robot serves customers at Seoul restaurant

An artificial intelligence serving robot moves during a demonstration at a restaurant in Seoul, South Korea, September 15, 2020. Reuters

AI robot serves customers at Seoul restaurant

An employee puts a meal on an artificial intelligence serving robot during a demonstration at a restaurant in Seoul, South Korea, on September 15, 2020. Reuters

Seoul, September 15

"Aglio Kim", a trolley-like robot which uses artificial intelligence (AI), is delivering food to customers at a restaurant in Seoul in order to minimise human contact and help ensure social distancing.

Shortly after customers order through a touch-screen on the table, the 1.25-meter-tall robot, developed by South Korean telecom company KT Corp, brings the food and uses its visual SLAM (simultaneous localisation and mapping) capabilities to avoid obstacles and navigate around customers.

The robot can deliver food to up to four tables at once, KT's AI Platform Business Team leader Lee Young-jin told Reuters.

The AI robot is equipped with food trays which can carry up to 30 kilograms and an LCD screen and speaker that communicate in both Korean and English.

Aglio Kim, a trolley-like robot which uses artificial intelligence, is serving food to customers. Reuters

"Customers found the robot serving quite unique and interesting, and also felt safe from the coronavirus," said Lee Young-ho, a manager at the Mad for Garlic restaurant which has tested the robot this month.

From Monday, restaurants and cafes in the densely populated Seoul metropolitan area are allowed to open after 9 pm, but must leave two metres between tables and record patrons' names and contact details.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) reported 106 new coronavirus cases as of Monday, bringing its total number of infections to 22,391 with 367 deaths.

KT said that they aim to supply more robots for restaurants this year and will unveil a second model with AI voice recognition technology early next year.

— Reuters

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