A London borough is using a virtual employee to greet visitors to its new civic center, claiming it is cheaper than a human worker.

The London borough of Brent has a new two-dimensional employee. The local government have spent £12,000 (almost $19,000) on Shanice, a hologram greeter who will welcome guests and answer questions at the borough’s new civic center, thereby replacing their human receptionist.

The Council (local government body) decided on the investment because it claims it will be cheaper than hiring an actual person. While Shanice may only cost £12,000 (£17,000 less than a receptionist’s salary says the Council), the cost of reprogramming and maintenance may end up being more.

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