We’ve read about Somabar, the world’s first countertop robot bartender, introduced to capture the hearts of tech-obsessed booze liquorist. Somabar debuted with much fanfare at CES 2016 and took home the Best of Innovation Award for Home Appliances. Ever since, the world of robotics is popping up robot bartenders with all kinds of tricks up their sleeves.

Meet Cabo, the robot bartender

Take Cabo, for instance, who made its debut in 2017. The six-foot-tall robot bartender can make cocktails from 25 bottles hanging upside-down from the ceiling. Another robo-bartender carves ice balls in the fraction of the time it takes a human with a knife and an ice pick.

The robot arm shakes up concoctions at the Café Bot Bot Bot coffee bar. Manager Kim Tae-wan takes pride in the matter that the ‘drink bot’ can provide a consistent quality of their mixes that human bartenders can’t.

Café Bot Bot Bot is swarming with customers encouraged by the safety the robo-bartender promises. However, there are a few limitations when we consider this robot bartender as a replacement of a human bartender. You will not find any cherries on top, or dusting or nutmeg, and surely the robot bartender won’t talk you through a breakup.

Enforcing Social Distancing Etiquette with Robots

After minimizing the spread of an outbreak of the new coronavirus that infected nearly 11,000 and killed 269, South Korea is slowly moving from intensive social distancing rules towards a more relaxed scheme, known as, ‘distancing in daily life.’

South Korean cafés and bars are hiring robot barista to help with social distancing. In a café in Daejeon, South Korea, a robot barista serves customers. It consists of a robotic arm that prepares 60 different beverages. Another wheeled robot delivers drinks to customers around the café. The robot barista has helped the tiny café minimize risk of human-to-human coronavirus transmission.

Lee Dong-bae, director of research at Vision Semicon, the smart factory solution provider that built the robot barista, believes robots could help us observe social distancing in public.

Vision Semicon aims to supply at least 30 cafes with robots by the end of 2020. It is also working in collaboration with a state-run science institute on an upgrade that would add big data and artificial intelligence technology to make custom beverages.

South Korea is embracing techno-utopianism at an alarming speed. With technological conveniences like holograms and robot baristas, the nation futurism is incremental.