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Robot to serve at Pizza Hut Asia

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MasterCard has unveiled the first commerce application for SoftBank Robotics’ humanoid robot Pepper.
The application will be powered by MasterPass, the global digital payment service from MasterCard that connects consumers with merchants, enabling them to make fast, simple, and secure digital payments across channels and devices.
Pizza Hut Restaurants Asia will be the inaugural launch partner working together with MasterCard to create innovative customer engagement with Pepper.
A major first step forward in bringing conversational commerce experiences to merchants and consumers, this new app extends the robot’s ability to integrate customer service, access to information and sales into a seamless and consistent user experience. Pizza Hut Asia will be piloting Pepper for order-taking and personalized engagement to enhance customer service in-store by end of 2016.
“Consumers have come to expect personalized service, customized offers and simple and seamless processes both in-store and online,” says Tobias Puehse, vice president, innovation management, Digital Payments and Labs at MasterCard. “The app’s goal is to provide consumers with more memorable and personalized shopping experience beyond today’s self-serve machines and kiosks, by combining Pepper’s intelligence with a secure digital payment experience via MasterPass.”
A consumer will be able to initiate an engagement by simply greeting Pepper and pairing the consumer’s MasterPass account by either tapping the Pepper icon within the wallet or by scanning a QR code on the tablet that the robot holds.
After pairing with MasterPass, Pepper will be able to assist cardholders by providing personalised recommendations and offers, additional information on products, and assistance in checking out and paying for items. Pepper will be able to initiate, approve and complete a transaction by connecting to MasterPass via a Wi-Fi connection and the entire transaction happens within the wallet.
“We are excited to welcome Pepper to the Pizza Hut family,” says Vipul Chawla, MD of Pizza Hut Restaurants Asia. “Core to our digital transformation journey is the ability to make it easier for customers to engage, connect and transact with Pizza Hut.  With an order-and-payment-enabled Pepper, customers can now come to expect personalised ordering at our stores, reduce wait time for carryout, and have a fun, frictionless user experience.”
The app was built by the MasterCard Labs team in Singapore, one of the company’s eight research and development centers across the globe.