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Thursday, March 30, 2023

Robots Now at Istanbul Airport

Istanbul’s new airport may only have one terminal right now, but that terminal covers 1.4 million sqm.

For some people, navigating that will require a helping hand – and four robots have been put to work on the task.

Passengers will be able to approach the robots and scan their tickets to see their flight status, get directions and view other flight information in English or Turkish.

The ‘humanoid’ (aka human-like) robots move on wheels, and can perform expressions through their arms and on-screen faces.

They are not the first robots to creep into the travel experience.

robot called Pepper provides advice and assistance to Eurostar passengers at London St Pancras, two Peppers process passengers at Taipei’s International airport, while Marriott, Hilton and Mandarin Oriental have all invested in robot staff at some of their hotels.

In 2015 the Henn-Na Hotel in Nagasaki became the first hotel run by robots, though reportedly had to fire half its non-sentient staff earlier this year after the experience failed to reduce costs or workload for employees.

More recently, robots have been parking cars at Lyon-Saint Exupéry and Gatwick airports.

Will the new hires prove more useful at Istanbul? On our recent article on issues at the new airport, commenters debated the pros and cons of the vast size of the new terminal. Let us know what you what think below.

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