Japanese service provider, SoftBank is partnering with Microsoft to develop robots which can improve the shopping experience of its customers.
The first phase of the cooperation between the two companies involves integration between Microsoft’s cloud-computing technologies with SoftBank’s `Pepper’ robot to help retailers enhance customer service.
SoftBank claims Pepper to be the world’s first personal robot which can read emotions. Priced at JPY198,000 ($1,600), Pepper was commercially launched in Japan in February. The company uses robots in some of its retail shops in the country. Pepper is manufactured by Foxconn.
The service provider believes that cloud-computing technologies will enable robots to make shopping recommendations to its customers. SoftBank had earlier announced formation of a robot venture in collaboration with Alibaba and Foxconn.