A California Hotel is Testing Out a Robotic Bellhop

Botlr Think of it as the Terminator’s human-friendly sibling. In a hotel lobby across the street from Apple’s corporate campus, a desk clerk places a razor in the bin of a three-foot-high robot and taps in a room number on a display. The robot, “Botlr,” chirps an R2-D2-style acknowledgment and rolls off to an elevator and its final destination. On Aug. 20, the Aloft hotel here will begin testing this robotic bellhop, a wheeled service vehicle designed to shuttle items from the hotel lobby desk to guest rooms. Whether a gimmick or a sign of things to come, Botlr is the latest among a new generation of robots — like Google’s self-driving car, Aetheon’s Tug hospital supply robot and Caddytrek’s electric golf caddy — that are starting to walk or roll around the everyday world.

Read the full story at The New York Times.