Rise of the Robots


December 12, 2017

I have written before on this blog about the ‘rise of the machines’ within the hospitality industry. So, I was particularly interested to see that, following this trend, Channel 4 recently announced their own season of programming dedicated to all things AI.

The ‘Rise of the Robots’ season features a series of specially commissioned documentaries, exploring the variety of ways in which artificial intelligence will play an ever-increasing role in our everyday lives.

Whether it’s self-driving vehicles and the AI already built into cars being made by Tesla today, or the way in which scientists are harnessing artificial intelligence to create machines that are eerily humanistic, these programmes serve to further underline my assertion that robots will have an increasingly large role to play in the world of hospitality over the coming years.

The crucial factor: that these machines – and this technology – is helpful… as well as being easy to use. More than that – it has to be approachable too. After all, no hotel guest is going to be inclined to interact with a machine that’s rude! So, of all the programmes shown as part of the ‘Rise of the Robots’ season, of particular interest to me is ‘Ask Jess’, where a team of experts from Manchester and Plymouth Universities work together to create the ultimate personal assistant robot. From marriage and divorce to infidelity and obesity, there’s no issue that Jess hasn’t got an opinion on!

What all of this illustrates: the future of artificial intelligence isn’t only coming… in some cases it is already here. The prominence of robots continues to rise. Where will it end? I believe the only limit will be our imagination. What does it mean to marketers? I believe it’s an opportunity – to identify where this technology can improve and / or enhance the overall consumer experience. If, as marketing experts, we can embrace that, the future looks very exciting indeed.


By Rob Conway

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