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Will robots soon take over the service industry in China?

ACCORDING to World Bank data, China’s working population has been constantly declining since 2010. As a result, labour costs have been rising for businesses. As a result, Alibaba has resorted to deploying robots to replace waiters in Chinese restaurants. At the “Robot.He” diners, patrons are served by robots that roll around on table-high runways. It’s similar to conveyer belt sushi restaurants where dishes are sent to your table. Except, the dishes are served by robots the size of microwaves and are not constrained to the “belt.” SEE ALSO: Thailand’s growing dependence on robots The diners are a part of Alibaba’s Hema chain of semi-automated supermarkets, which is part of the company’s initiative in driving an omnichannel retail model. “In Shanghai, a waiter costs up to 10,000 yuan (US$1,500) per month. That’s hundreds of thousands in cost every year. And two shifts of people are needed,” Cao Haitao, the Alibaba product manager...

 

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