When it comes to technology, there are many things the Japanese do very, very well: mobile phones, cameras, cars, TV's -- the list can go on and on. One of the often overlooked advanced technological devices in Japan? Vending machines.
To say Japan has mastered the art and science of vending machines would be an understatement. There are vending machines over there for just about everything. From hot corn soup to cigarettes, vending machine makers in Japan have now taken things to the next level with touch-screen vending machines. What better way to enjoy the process of buying a drink than by combining it with the joy many of us have when using an iPhone?
And as if touch-screen technology weren't enough, the vending machines also have cameras installed in them where a computer assesses your age and gender to help give recommendations on what to buy. The way it works is that if the vending machine detects a woman, then tea or bottled water is suggested. If you're a young man, the computer will recommend a sports drink or bottled water. It does have its limitations though - as the video above demonstrates, when a person's eyes are blocked by dark sunglasses, the computer has trouble detecting the age and gender and therefore can't make a suggestion.
It's all pretty crazy stuff. Next time you're in Tokyo stop by Shinagawa Station to try it out!
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