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News From The Future-28

NEWS FROM THE FUTURE – Customer Service Holograms At Airports

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — She smiles, answers questions and can guide you to the nearest restroom or to your connecting flight. But don’t try to shake her hand. That’s because “she” is an avatar, the latest high-tech venture at the three major airports in the New York City area. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey unveiled the device Monday at Newark and La Guardia airports. Those two, along with JFK, will be the first airports in North America to get an avatar this summer. The Port Authority is renting them for about $180,000 for six months. They cost about $250,000 each. According to the Port Authority, more than 100 million travelers pass through the three airports annually.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. Lenny says:

    There were one of these in the “Joyce Mayne” store in Nowra, NSW, Australia. It was selling a vacuum cleaner and was extremely creepy.

  2. DanS says:

    These are not holograms, it’s accurate rear-projection onto a screen shaped as the profile of the presenter. Clever marketing by the guys at Musion again, I suspect.

  3. AdamW says:

    I built one of these recently for the marketing company I work for. Dan is correct- it’s a special rear-projection film applied to water-jet-cut 1/2″ acrylic. Ours is interactive, though- via proximity sensors and a wireless remote, and for about 10% of the price reported here. These guys are laughing all the way to the bank.

    Here’s ours- https://vimeo.com/41176327

    1. AdamW says:

      Actually, I just talked to my boss, and he’s talked to these guys- the $250k figure was for the whole project, including R&D, video production, and several units, not per-unit.

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