Robby Pepper can answer questions in Italian, English and German. He is Italy's first robot concierge. He is deployed at a hotel on the popular Lake Garda to help answer simple, usual questions from visitors.
    Robby Pepper可以用意大利语、英语和德语回答问题。他是意大利首个迎宾机器人。他被部署在加尔达湖的一家酒店,帮助回答游客提出的简单而又常见的问题。

    During one of Robby's first days, Mihail Slanina, a guest from Moldova, congratulated the robot on his skills.
    在Robby投入使用后不久,摩尔多瓦游客Mihail Slanina称赞了这个机器人的技能。

    "He's like a real person, he's really good," she said. "He talks, he shook my hand."

    Japan's Softbank Robotics created Robby. The Italian company Jampaa programed the robot. It can provide hotel guests with information they need, like where to find a restaurant and its hours of operation.

    The summer season brings an increased number of visitors to Lake Garda. They will help Robby gain new knowledge and learn to answer more questions.

    The use of robots is growing in service industries like tourism. Most of the robots serve mainly as novelties. But they are expected to become more useful as better artificial intelligence, or AI, is developed.

    The International Federation of Robotics says about 79,000 professional service robots were sold last year. The Frankfurt, Germany-based organization expects up to 25 percent sales growth each year through 2020. These artificial intelligence machines include defense robots, cleaning robots, and medical robots.

    In 2016, 7,200 public relations robots like Robby Pepper were sold — a 135 percent increase from 2015 sales.
    2016年全球售出了7200个类似Robby Pepper的公关机器人,比2015年增长了135%。

    Richard Windsor is a technology businessman in London. He says the use of robots is not yet common because artificial intelligence is not complex enough.
    理查德·温莎(Richard Windsor)是伦敦的一位科技商人。他说,机器人的应用尚不普遍,因为人工智能不够复杂。

    He says the proof is that the companies responsible for the two best AI systems, Google Assist and Baidu's DuerOS, do not make robots.

    Windsor says that the "novelty" robots will disappear after people get used to them. New service robots will appear when artificial intelligence improves, he says.

    "In order to make these things better, you need to gather data, so you have to be out there," he said.

    Public acceptance is important to the robot industry. Experts say people in the United States and Japan seem more welcoming to robots than do people in Europe.

    Shoppers at a store in Scotland got one robot, Softbank's Fabio Pepper, dismissed. Customers were not willing to talk to the robot. And a security robot at an office complex in Washington, DC made news last year when it rolled itself into a fountain and would not get out.
    苏格兰一家商店的顾客迎来了软银公司的Fabio Pepper机器人,但是最终他被退了回来。顾客们不愿意跟机器人对话。华盛顿特区一栋办公大楼的安保机器人去年自己掉入喷泉中无法离开,一时成了新闻。

    In the Italian town of Brescia, the Cayu car store is using another Softbank Pepper robot to sell cars. Named Cayuiki, the robot is programmed to give information on cars, play games, and gather information. Its presence is helping to bring in possible car buyers.

    But, Andreas Barchetti, head of the Cayu dealership, said to sell the cars, you still need human beings.
    但是Cayu汽车经销店负责人Andreas Barchetti表示,卖车还得靠人。

    I'm Susan Shand.