The Smithsonian Museum Trials Social Robots As Tour Guides

The Smithsonian Museum Trials Social Robots As Tour Guides
Shopper Marketing & Promotions

The museum is utilizing Pepper robots to enhance exhibit tours and guide more visitors to less frequently attended spaces

Sara Roncero-Menendez
  • 7 may 2018

Robotic greeters have been popping up in different industries, including hospitality and banking. The next adopters might be museums: The Smithsonian is putting Pepper robots into six of its locations in order to assistant docents as they lead tours. The robots were donated to the institute by SoftBank Robotics, and are intended to improve the visitor experience, including increasing footfall in “under-attended galleries” and working toward greater engagement with the exhibitions. 

While it is still a pilot program, The Smithsonian is looking to add more Peppers in additional spaces in June, and visitors hoping to meet one of these robots can find a schedule here. Pepper allows visitors to remain present in the space, as opposed to audio or AR tours that put technology between the visitor and what they are seeing.

The Smithsonian | SoftBank Robotics


Lead Image: The Smithsonian

Robotic greeters have been popping up in different industries, including hospitality and banking. The next adopters might be museums: The Smithsonian is putting Pepper robots into six of its locations in order to assistant docents as they lead tours. The robots were donated to the institute by SoftBank Robotics, and are intended to improve the visitor experience, including increasing footfall in “under-attended galleries” and working toward greater engagement with the exhibitions. 

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