Restaurant employs cat for sushi delivery—a robot cat, that is

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Sushi Island, a restaurant in Canada, recently introduced Pudu Robotics’ BellaBot, a moving robot with a head shaped like a cat, as an addition to the restaurant’s staff.

BellaBot can easily move, orient and navigate all by herself in highly dynamic and crowded environments. Equipped with intelligent induction trays, the robot can deliver food to three to four tables at a time. When she arrives at a table, the light strip beside the tray starts to flash, reminding the customers to pick up the food. After the food is taken off the tray, the light strip goes out, at which point the robot will move on to the next table.

The robot server can be seen in action in the video below.

According to a press release from Pudu, a worker at Sushi Island, the restaurant has experienced a sharp increase in its number of visits since BellaBot was adopted on Jan. 17, and no, wonder. You had us at “cat,” and you had us at “sushi.”

BellaBot has apparently been a great help in the restaurant’s effort to provide contact-less delivery during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The electronic cat is also a big hit, with some of the following reactions being reported in the press release:

“OMG! My kids watch Sam & Cat on Netflix and they have a restaurant with robot servers. This totally reminded me of that. My kids think this is super cool !”

“We were there on Saturday. Bella is a treat and was quite amusing to my children & myself. Way to go @sushiisland. Does not replace the human interaction at all, just allows for less physical contact.”

“I am impressed. Can it sing?”

Employees at Sushi Island told Pudu Robotics that they posted a video showing the work of BellaBot on Facebook, and the popularity was unprecedented.  Only one week after BellaBot’s arrival on Jan. 24, the video got 910 shares, 924 comments, and 433 likes, and these figures are still growing.

This robot cat is developed by Pudu Robotics, a provider of commercial robots.

BellaBot also comes with a Cruise mode, which is designed for the robot to move back and forth to deliver snacks or buffet food. In Cruise mode, the robot can walk around at the front door of the shopping center or the restaurant to help attract customers. BellaBot also offers a Birthday mode, in which she delivers birthday cakes accompanied by music blessings.

And, yes, she is also a singing robot!


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