A robot hotel in Japan has culled more than half of its robotic workforce since it launched, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal on Monday.
“It’s easier now that we’re not being frequently called by guests to help with problems with the robots,” one staff member reportedly said.
The hotel initially hoped that the robots would help it to overcome a labour shortage in the rural area that it is based. It wanted to use the robots for everything from stirring cocktails to answering a plethora of guest queries.
But the robots were not advanced enough to perform many of the tasks that it wanted them to do.
Guests became frustrated when their in-room robot “Churi,” which lagged behind other AI assistants like Siri and Alexa, failed to answer their questions.
One guest was reportedly awoken every few hours because a robot thought he was asking it a question when he was in fact just snoring.
There has been one successful robot, according to the report. A huge mechanical arm that puts luggage into storage boxes and retrieves it again.