Local businesses say technology is creating more jobs, NOT taking them away

No robots here.. just another way to improve customer service. Still very Jetson-like though.. self-ordering kiosks at McDonalds. 5/18/17 (Heather Mills | KSNV)

Flying cars may not be a reality just yet, but technology is changing how we live, especially how we eat and drink.

A new study says Las Vegas will lose 65% of its jobs to automation by 2025.

At McCarran International Airport and other service-driven businesses, leaders say technology is only helping customer interaction.

Take Jennifer, Angie, and Adam for example. They’re holograms in Terminal D at McCarran Airport. They’ve been helping travelers navigate the terminal since December. Spokesperson Christine Crews said they’re not replacing human interaction, they’re just another facet for assistance.

“If we offer people multiple channels of customer service whether they be one on one interactions, whether it be static boards and maps that people are more accustomed to and then technology like this we can reach a wider audience where they’re most comfortable," she told us. Crews added, “We’re never going to replace that human component, that one to one attention that a lot of people need and desire, but the novelty of it all gets people’s attention and gets them to where they need to be."

The cost for the three holograms was $36,000 and it includes service and maintenance. Crews said it’s making an impact.

Though, in this tech-driven world, sometimes people are more comfortable with a computer or touchscreen. Claude, for example, is part of a new wave of service in Las Vegas. “Hello, welcome to McDonald's,” he greeted customers as they entered the restaurant at Durango and Sunset. “Let me show you how to work the kiosk,” he said.

McDonald's now offers self-order kiosks which allow guests to create their own meal at their own pace. Then technology tracks their order and pinpoints their location in the restaurant for better service.

Owner and Operator Ron Smith said, “It's the experience of the future,” he added “It allows the customers to interact with us on a different level than they have in the past.”

With greeters now part of the equation, it’s actually adding jobs he said. “We are adding people and not taking people away.” McDonald's is also rolling out mobile ordering and has partnered with UberEats to deliver food to the customer. Smith said it’s all technology-driven, but with a personal element.

If you’re up for something a little more out of this world, coming June 30 to Las Vegas is Tipsy Robot in Miracle Mile. “We are combing theatrical, craftsmanship, high-tech and art all in one place," said Owner Rino Armeni.

It’s two bars. One is robotic. One is human.

“These robots, aside from serving drinks, they can also dance,” he said. He also said they can make any drink you want. They’re interactive, so while it’s still shrouded in secrecy, he’s calling it interactive mixology.

“The robots are about attraction and entertainment. It’s not about replacing a human being,” Armeni said, adding that he thinks they’re a bit more high tech than the Jetsons.

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