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A restaurant chain based in Japan named Yoronotaki has opened a small pub in one of Tokyo’s busy train stations. The uniqueness of this pub is that here drinks are being served by a robotic bartender.

The bar, which is located in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro train station, is named Zeroken Robo Tavern. The bar is owned by Yoronotaki, a restaurant chain that operates izakaya-style restaurants around Japan.

The bar opened on 23rd January of this year and will run until 19th March. This experimental and temporary bar is part of a pilot program, which is run to ascertain how customers respond to being served by a machine instead of human/s.

What is more, the robot is equipped with a set of cameras built into its screen, whose role is to monitor the visible emotional state of customers; for example whether they are getting impatient or are relaxed.

This robot of a bartender, which can serve draft beer in 40 seconds and cocktail in less than a minute, was designed by QBIT Robotics, which has to its credit of developing a similar robot arm server for a small takeout pasta restaurant prior to this experiment.

However, this creative innovation is induced by mundane necessity. Yoronotaki decided to go for the robotic bartender project partly to address the company’s recent challenges in maintaining a full staff.