SoftBank's Pepper Robots Get Jobs Selling Coffee Machines

Customers interact with the humanoid robot 'Pepper', developed by SoftBank's Aldebaran Robotics unit Photograph by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

Japanese companies have long relied on robots, and with good reason: High wages and a shrinking population have pushed manufacturers looking for improved productivity to the forefront of robotic technology. The country’s third-richest man, Takemitsu Takizaki, is the founder and chairman of Keyence, an Osaka manufacturer of sensors used in factory automation.

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