In April, humanoid robots designed by the creator of SoftBank’s Pepper robot will provide assistance to banking customers at Japan’s largest bank, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.
According to Bloomberg, the 58-centimeter (about two feet) tall humanoid robot, named Nao (pictured), will greet visitors and offer assistance in 19 languages. Like its larger sibling Pepper, Nao will reportedly be capable of reading human emotions.
Mitsubishi UFJ’s newest “employee” is created by Paris-based Aldebaran, which was acquired by SoftBank for roughly US$100 million back in 2012.
SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son is bullish on the future of robotics, and his company’s ubiquitous retail outlets will begin selling the US$2,000 Pepper robots direct to consumers by the end of this month. Nao has previously been deployed at schools and research facilities and retails for roughly US$8,000.
Even Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, is on board with the national “robotics revolution.” He’s hoping to host a Robot Olympics to coincide with the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.