Skip to Main Content An affective guide robot in a shopping mall Abstract: To explore possible robot tasks in daily life, we developed a guide robot for a shopping mall and conducted a field trial with it.
The robot was designed to interact naturally with customers and to affectively provide shopping information.
It was also designed to repeatedly interact with people to build a rapport; since a shopping mall is a place people repeatedly visit, it provides the chance to explicitly design a robot for multiple interactions. For this capability, we used RFID tags for person identification.
The robot was semi-autonomous, partially controlled by a human operator, to cope with the difficulty of speech recognition in a real environment and to handle unexpected situations. Robot in the mall field trial was conducted at a shopping mall for 25 days to observe how the robot performed this task and how people interacted with it.
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The robot interacted with approximately groups of customers each day. We invited customers to sign up for RFID tags and those who participated answered questionnaires.
The results revealed that 63 out of people in fact went shopping based on the information provided by the robot. The experimental results suggest promising potential for robots working in shopping malls.