Hi! I'm Josie Pepper 

A humanoid robot with artificial intelligence

With the start of test operations in mid-February 2018, Munich Airport became Germany's first airport to try out a humanoid robot equipped with artificial intelligence.

In a trial period lasting several weeks, Josie Pepper will welcome travelers to the non-public area of Terminal 2. In her initial deployment, she will speak English and wait at the top of the ramp leading to the shuttle connecting the main terminal to the satellite building. She will welcome passengers and answer their questions about shops, restaurants and flight operations.

The pilot phase will help to identify how passengers feel about Josie Pepper. Josie's "brain" contains a high-performance processor with a WLAN internet access. This creates a connection to a cloud service where speech is processed, interpreted and linked to the airport data. What sets the system apart: When this robot type speaks, it does not just deliver pre-defined texts. With its ability to learn, it answers each question individually.

Josie Pepper undergoes preparations for her role

Close cooperation with IBM 

In Japan and other countries, Josie Pepper and her robot colleagues are often seen in stores, airports and similar locations: In shops they welcome customers, answer questions, accept complaints – or even give advice on the best type of coffee. While the robot is speaking, her big round eyes glow a green color and she waves her arms. Her hands and fingers have separate joints, resembling those of people. Instead of legs she gets around on rollers.

IBM Watson Internet of Things (IoT) cloud-based, artificial intelligence technologies are behind Josie Pepper’s capabilities. The robot itself, which stands 120 cm tall, was developed by SoftBank Robotics.

The lady robot was given the name "Josie Pepper" on arrival in Munich – inspired by the airport's official name "Franz Josef Strauss" – by the Munich Airport and Lufthansa staff.

  • Young Daniel asks Josie Pepper the way to the nearest play area. The lady robot answers without hesitation
  • Asked how she is, the robot replies promptly: "I´m fine, thank you. What can I do for you?" The voice sounds a little metallic, but also somehow young and childlike
  • The robot technology was developed by SoftBank Robotics. Josie Pepper's "brain" is based on Watson (IBM)

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