​SK Telecom launches AI speaker in convenience stores

SK Telecom will install NUGU AI speakers at 100 CU convenience stores that will assist store clerks.

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NUGU AI speaker: a friend of clerks or company overlord?

Image: SK Telecom

SK Telecom will install its NUGU-brand AI speakers at 100 CU convenience stores to help store operations, the telco has announced.

The speakers will be placed near the counter so that store clerks can ask around 200 questions related to managing and operating their stores.

The speakers will answer questions such as the current location of delivery trucks that are bringing in refrigerated and frozen goods and alcohol so that clerks can store them in a timely fashion.

It will also have information of in-store equipment vendors so that clerks can contact them when there are malfunctions.

At BGF Retail, which runs the CU-brand of convenience stores, clerks had to call HQ or search in their computers for information related to store management. SK Telecom and BGF Retail hope the speakers will save considerable time for store employees in day-to-day management and promotional events.

The two companies said they will expand the deployment of the speakers going forward.

SK Telecom said it will launch an open version of the AI platform for developers within the year and expand in the enterprise by aiming for retailers and hotels.

The telco first launched the service aimed at the home in 2016.

It launched a portable version of the speakers for outdoor use last year thanks to its popularity.

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