A Japanese hotel reportedly fired half of its nearly 250 robot staff following various complaints from guests.
Henn-na Hotel, which employs various robots from check-in staff to in-room help, reportedly decided to lay off half of its robot employees after they proved to be more of a nuisance than a benefit.
According to CNET, “Henn-na’s robot staff was first employed in 2015 with the aim of becoming ‘the most efficient hotel in the world.’ But four years later, it seems that the 243 robots are less of a novelty and more of a nuisance. As a result, the Henn-na Hotel has fired half of them.”
CNET reported that a number of guests had complained about the robots, which allegedly woke them up in the middle of the night, interrupted conversations, and struggled to “answer basic guest questions without human help.”
“Bellhop robots were designed to carry luggage, but they could only move on flat surfaces and could only access a small number of rooms,” explained CNET. “Their hotel careers were also cut short.”
On Henn-na Hotel’s website, the hotel claims to be “the world-first hotel staffed by robots.”
“At the front desk, you will be greeted by multi-lingual robots that will help you check in or check out. At the cloakroom, the robotic arm will store your luggage for you. Mechanic yet somehow human, those fun moments with the robots will warm your heart. Furthermore, once you register your face with our face recognition system, you will be free from the hassle of carrying the room key around or worrying about losing it,” the hotel explained on its website. “Robots make up our main staff. Please feel free to enjoy conversing with these warm and friendly robots as they efficiently go about their work.”