Hilton has partnered with IBM to pilot what it is calling “the world’s first Watson-enabled hotel concierge”.
Named Connie – the robot uses technology developed by IBM to help guests with information on local attractions, restaurant suggestions, and details on hotel services.
The robot is currently stationed in the reception area of the Hilton McClean in Virginia, and according to the group is “learning to interact with guests and respond to their questions in a friendly and informative manner”.
Connie uses IBM Watson technology and “cognitive travel recommendation engine” WayBlazer to enable it to greet guests and answer questions.
Hilton says that “the more guests interact with Connie, the more it learns, adapts and improves its recommendations” – the group will also have access to a log of guest questions (and Connie’s answers), to “enable improvements to guests' experiences before, during and after their stays”.
Earlier this week global media commerce company Travelzoo unveiled research showing that “three quarters of travellers think that the use of robots in the travel industry would significantly improve their lives” (see news March 9).