Hilton, IBM Debut Connie, A Robotic Concierge

By Jesse Sokolow on 10 March 2016
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DSC_0897 (1)Hilton Worldwide announced a new partnership with IBM under which the two will pilot “Connie,” a robot concierge powered by IBM’s Jeopardy-winning Watson AI platform.

The robot, named for Hilton founder Conrad Hilton, is able to greet guests, understand questions using natural language processing, and provide answers. It’s able to tackle questions about nearby restaurants, tourist attractions, and hotel information, using information from WayBlazer, a travel information platform. It’s not yet capable of checking guests in yet, however, nor can it run errands.

Connie is currently stationed at the Hilton McLean in Virginia, where it is learning to interact with guests and answer questions. Hilton says that the system also has the ability to learn during each interaction, and that it is able to adapt and improve its recommendations.

Guests interact with Connie’s physical form, Nao, a French-made humanoid robot made by Aldebaran Robotics that is 23” (58 centimeters) tall and powered by an Intel Atom CPU.

Hilton will have access to a log of the questions posed to Connie, as well as the robot’s answers, which the company will use to improve guest experiences.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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