ANA HOLDINGS Collaborates with OryLab and The Nippon
Foundation to Expand Opportunities for those with Disabilities
- •AVATAR Cafe DAWN ver. β combines the strengths of each partner to offer a sneak peek at how future technology will change our world.
- •Robotic breakthroughs hint at new era of mobility and interactivity.
TOKYO, Dec. 10, 2018 - ANA HOLDINGS INC. (hereinafter "ANA HD") recently partnered with OryLab Inc. (hereinafter "OryLab") and The Nippon Foundation to open AVATAR Cafe DAWN ver. β, an interactive experience featuring remotely-operated robotic waitstaff. Open from Nov. 26 until Dec. 7, 2018, the cafe - located at The Nippon Foundation's building - is designed to offer a sneak peek at a future where robots and connected smart technology open up new possibilities for those with disabilities.
The Nippon Foundation dates back to 1962 and has been involved in activities to support people with disabilities in Japan and around the world for more than five decades. Its experience working with such individuals has led to an emphasis on removing obstacles that prevent their equal participation in society. The Nippon Foundation wants to contribute to that paradigm shift by offering innovative support that seeks to allow people with disabilities better display their abilities and thereby lead the way in encouraging and inspiring others in society.
The innovative OriHime-D robot appearing at the cafe is a result of OryLab's drive to create technology that offers interactive alternatives to those suffering from physical disabilities. OryLab, led by CEO Kentaro Yoshifuji, has been developing and researching Avatar robots since 2009. His mission is to "let anyone, even a person with a disability, go anywhere in the world," and was inspired by the CEO's desire to help a personal friend with ALS. The robots pair with an intuitive control interface that allows for remote operation via eye movement and was featured alongside the equally groundbreaking OriHime desk robot.
"Successful collaborations like AVATAR Cafe DAWN ver. β allow for each partner to highlight their own strengths and leads to results that are greater than the sum of their parts," said Yoshiaki Tsuda, Vice President, ANA Digital Design Lab. "That is what we sought to do by joining with OryLab and The Nippon Foundation, and I believe that the strong public reaction to AVATAR Cafe DAWN ver. β demonstrates that the future of this technology is incredibly promising. At ANA we strive to bring people closer together, and we pledge to remain at the forefront of innovation in technology that enhances connectivity."
ANA HD shares the goals of OryLab and The Nippon Foundation and aims to create a better society for all. The program is an important component of the company's ambitious "ANA AVATAR VISION," and its success shows that the future is bright for connected robotics technology. In the future, participants hope to introduce the Avatar robots to museums in spring 2019 and launch a permanent Avatar cafe by 2020.
Further information about ANA AVATAR can be found in the link below.
Contact: ANA Corporate Communications, TEL +81-3-6735-1111, email@example.com
Following the "Inspiration of Japan" high quality of service, ANA has been awarded the respected 5-Star rating every year since 2013 from SKYTRAX. ANA is the only Japanese airline to win this prestigious designation six years in a row. Additionally, ANA has been recognized by Air Transport World as "Airline of the Year" three times in the past 10 years - 2007, 2013 and 2018, becoming one of the few airlines winning this prestigious award for multiple times.
ANA was founded in 1952 with two helicopters and has become the largest airline in Japan, as well as one of the most significant airlines in Asia, operating 78 international routes and 118 domestic routes. ANA offers a unique dual hub model which enables passengers to travel to Tokyo and connect through the two airports in the metropolitan Tokyo, NARITA and HANEDA, to various destinations throughout Japan, and also offers same day connections between various North American, Asian and Chinese cities.
ANA has been a member of Star Alliance since 1999 and has joint venture partnerships with United Airlines, Lufthansa German Airlines, Swiss International Airlines and Austrian Airlines.
Besides the full service and award winner carrier ANA, the ANA Group has two LCCs as consolidated subsidiaries, Vanilla Air Inc. and Peach Aviation Limited. The ANA Group carried 53.8 million passengers in FY2017, has approximately 39,000 employees and a fleet of 260 aircraft. ANA is a proud launch customer and the biggest operator of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.
For more information, please refer to the following link.
About OryLab Inc.
OryLab is established by Kentaro Yoshifuji, Shiiba Yoshifumi, and Aki Yuki in 2009 to develop and provide an avatar robot named "OrIHime". OriHime is is an avatar robot that allows, for people whom are not able to be there in person to be close by, by creating a feeling of "presence". The user, a hospitalized child, a person with disability or a loved one living apart from each other, will operate the device from his/her Smartphone or Tablet via internet, by seeing, listening and speaking through OriHime, which in return becomes an essential part of the user, his/her avatar, creating a feeling of interconnection and "presence" wherever the robot is placed. Kentaro Yoshifuji is awarded 30 Under 30 in Forbes Asia, Iclif Leadership Energy Award 2017 and more for his contribution for the society. OryLab keeps pursuing the diversified society.
About The Nippon Foundation
The Nippon Foundation was established in 1962 as a nonprofit philanthropic organization, active in Japan and around the world. Initially its efforts focused largely on the maritime and shipping fields, but since then the range of our activities has expanded to education, social welfare, public health, and the projects aiming for more inclusive society. And they are carried out in more than 100 countries to date. Together with our more than 20 partner organizations in Japan and worldwide The Nippon Foundation is funding and assisting community-led efforts aimed at realizing a more peaceful and prosperous global society.