Robot Waiters
(Photo : Image Courtesy of royalpalacerenesse/Instagram)

Robots now being used in the Netherlands for a popular restaurant to maintain social distancing amidst the pandemic.

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What's with all the robots?

A restaurant in the Netherlands is now using robot waiters to maintain social distancing and an ingenious way of reducing human-to-human contact. The red and white colored robots can greet customers, serve food efficiently, and can clean up the table by picking up used dishes. The restaurant's name is Royal Palace and is located in the town of Renesse, thanks to our friends at the Associated Press. Leah Hu, one of the family-owned restaurant members, said, "They help us with the work we do," and added, "We are often busy, and cleaning tables and the robots give us an extra hand. We are not disappearing. We are still here. They will always need people in this industry."

The new norm

Many establishments in the Netherlands have been closed for months ever since the pandemic has started, but many are beginning to reopen with limits and new rules. One way for people to practice social distancing is the robot servers since they can't be infected by the coronavirus even if they wanted to. 

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It's been a tough couple of months for the foodservice sector, with restaurants cutting over 5.5 million workers in April. It seems doubtful that robot waiters would catch up in American food stores sometime soon because the cost alone possibly renders them prohibitive for most small establishments. Still, they have been popular in Chinese restaurants for many years now.

 Tingnan ang post na ito sa Instagram
@nosstories #robotnederland #royalpalacerenesse #renesse2020 Isang post na ibinahagi ni  Royal Palace (@royalpalacerenesse) noong May 26, 2020 nang 6:21am PDT

Don't worry, you'll not lose your job

If you're part of the food industry and fear of the robot uprising that may take your jobs, don't be. China has been using robot waiters for years now, but that doesn't mean they are good at their jobs. It's more of them being used as a novelty. It doesn't have anything to do with efficiency or precision of the robots but just for show.

Two restaurants in China were forced to close down because of the robots not doing a good job, and they had to sell off the robots to compensate. The two restaurants were plagued with constant issues.

"The robots weren't able to carry soup or other food steady, and they would frequently break down. The boss has decided never to use them again." says one waiter who served with the robots. "Their skills are somewhat limited ... They can't take orders or pour hot water for customers."

The third restaurant is apparently getting rid of all but one of their robots in favor of the usual, true to life workers. One of the restaurant owners said the robots drew customers, but they weren't economical. "The robots can attract plenty of customers, but they definitely can't reduce the need for human labor."

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