• Kyodo

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Welcome to Tokyo. Need directions? Ask Emiew3.

East Japan Railway Co. has started a pilot project under which a humanoid robot serves visitors in English, Chinese and Japanese.

Placed in front of the travel service center at the Marunouchi north exit, the 90-cm, 15-kg robot can respond to questions on trains leaving and arriving at the station as well as shops and restaurants within the station.

It can also provide information on tourist attractions around the station and display maps on a screen on its back.

Emiew3, developed by Hitachi, Ltd., will be in service on weekdays through Oct. 28, during which JR East will test its ability to understand questions and whether it can recognize people’s voices in a crowded, noisy environment.

Another Emiew3 is meanwhile being tested at Tokyo’s Haneda airport.

“We want to determine the robot’s technical issues ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” a JR East official said.

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