WATCH: Qatar adopts global trend of employing robot servers

WATCH: Qatar adopts global trend of employing robot servers

Qatar Living
By Qatar Living

Qatar’s desire to be ahead of the curve is not limited to one domain. It touches several areas but is certainly more prominent in the realm of technology.

Joining the global bandwagon of automating jobs in the service industry, Qatar’s restaurants have begun using robot waiters to serve food to diners.

One such restaurant, Canaan Gardens at Hyatt Plaza, welcomed its first non-human employee on board in November last year.

The robot is given an Arabic name, ‘Karam,’ which means generous.

Karam may not be on duty all the time but has been a fascinating addition to the team.

The restaurant uses Karam’s services on special occasions such as Eid-al-Fitr where she doles out giveaways to charm customers.

Karam’s presence at the restaurant has been a treat for customers, who often stop to take selfies with the robot waitress, according to the restaurant manager.

Soon Karam will have a ‘robot buddy’ for moral support amongst the human clan. The manager said the restaurant plans to expand its non-human employee strength to two to be able to cater to the diners on the second floor!

Karam is not the only robot server in Qatar!

That’s right. There’s another 5 ft 11 inch tall, automated server at a restaurant called The Yellow Chilli in The Pearl Qatar.

Named Amy, this robot waitress would politely say, “excuse me, you’re on my walking route,” if you happen to be in her way.

The Rise of the Robot

It seems that this global trend is on the rise. Countries like Japan, China, Canada, the US, Australia, Hungary, and more recently, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nepal, among others, have embraced the technology.

Photo Credit: 

Quite similar to humans, these service-oriented robots have different sizes, colors, appearance, and languages (yes, they can be programmed to speak the local language of a country!)

If you looked at the e-commerce giant, Ali Baba’s website, you can find a wide range of robots priced between USD2,500 up to USD9,000 (that’s roughly about QAR 9000 to QAR32,500).

Did you know?

While many would think the idea of hiring robot servers in restaurants is fairly new, according to the Guinness World Records, a restaurant named Two Panda Deli in California, US, was the first to employ two robot waiters about three and a half decades ago, in 1983!

Photo Credit:

Known as Tanbo R-1 and Tanbo R-2, these robots were programmed to be courteous to customers at the Chinese eatery.

The duo cost a whopping $20,000 each!

Sauntering across the restaurant, the robots would interact with diners in three different languages, English, Spanish and Japanese. According to the restaurant owner, hiring non-human staff meant no issues related to leaves, attitude, or behavior.

A customer said he was happy with the waiters as they did not talk back or require any tips!

However, the robots were machines after all. Their batteries had to be charged frequently and they would often misinterpret signals leading to messy situations at the eatery.

To robot or not to robot…

Why hire a robot when there are thousands of unemployed people across the world?

According to news reports from around the world, restaurant owners who have employed robot waiters are happy about these things: greater efficiency, lower running costs, a unique and attractive feature to draw in customers, and a means to imply technological advancement.

Photo Credit: Business Insider 

In contrast to this, robot servers may still need to be partly controlled by humans! Like in the case of Karam at Canaan Gardens, one of the human staff members controls it through a laptop.

Similar to any technological product, there may be unexpected incidents where the entire functionality of the robot simply goes berserk. 

Although creators of service robots are trying to humanize these machines as much as possible, they may still lack certain emotions that humans have. Known as humanoids, some of these robot servers look eerily like humans!

There’s been a lot of debate on the need to hire robot servers while many countries face high rates of unemployment. However, the technology may be put to a greater use, with Japan’s example, where a café allowed differently-abled people to control the robot waiters and earn a living.

What are your thoughts on this subject? Share with us in the comments below!


Make sure to check out our social media to keep track of the latest content.

Instagram - @qatarliving

Twitter - @qatarliving

Facebook - Qatar Living



Log in or register to post comments
Silatech joins hands with UN human rights body for youth empowerment

Silatech joins hands with UN human rights body for youth empowerment

In another stride toward better opportunities for the youth, Silatech and the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights have teamed up to develop programs for global youth empowerment.
Exciting events lined up for Summer in Qatar this July

Exciting events lined up for Summer in Qatar this July

This summer, Qatar is offering residents and visitors an opportunity to relish some of the best retail offers, promotions, and discounts along with exciting events across the nation.
HBKU student recognized for outstanding research on diabetes

HBKU student recognized for outstanding research on diabetes

The International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSSCR) has honored a PhD student at Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) College of Health and Life Sciences (CHLS) with a merit award for outstanding research.
Tips to maintain your car during summer

Tips to maintain your car during summer

It's time to see if your car is ready for the high temperatures as this can be tough on a vehicle. Here are a few pointers to help make sure you and your vehicle are ready for Qatar's summer.