Unstaffed shop to open in Tokyo on trial basis
NHK -- Oct 17
An unmanned store using artificial intelligence instead of cashiers is set to open on a trial basis at a station in Tokyo.

East Japan Railway, or JR East, plans to open the store on Wednesday at its Akabane Station in northern Tokyo.

Shoppers can use IC cards issued by transportation companies to enter and make purchases.

The shop has about 80 cameras in its ceiling and shelves. They're hooked up to an AI system that detects what items customers choose.

The store is to run for about 2 months. JR East is testing the concept with a view to putting it into full-scale operation.

Cashierless checkout systems have already been introduced at some stores in China. US e-commerce giant Amazon has opened automated shops in Seattle.

駅のホームに無人キオスクが登場しました。 JR東日本が赤羽駅のホームで17日から始めるのは、人工知能を使った無人キオスクの実証実験です。天井や棚に埋め込まれた120台近いカメラが客が手に取った商品を認識し、レジまで追跡します。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Nov 15
SoftBank Group Corp. is continuing to push money into one of its biggest investments: WeWork Cos. (Japan Times)
Nov 14
With Japan having suffered extensive damage from a number of natural disasters this year, the country's three top damage insurers are expected to pay out a record 1 trillion yen ($8.7 billion) in combined insurance claims in fiscal 2018 through March 2019. (Nikkei)
Nov 14
Oriental Land Co. ltd., the operator of Tokyo Disneyland, asked a court Tuesday to reject a suit filed by two female workers seeking damages for overwork and harassment while they were working as costumed performers at the theme park. (Japan Times)
Nov 14
SoftBank Group has set the stage for what is likely to be one of the largest initial public offerings ever, with its move to float mobile phone unit SoftBank Corp. But as Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son completes the conglomerate's divergence into an investing holding company and a wireless provider, market watchers see significant risks on both fronts. (Nikkei)
Nov 13
SoftBank Group Corp. is seeking to raise ¥2.4 trillion in the initial public offering of its domestic telecommunications operations scheduled for Dec. 19. (Japan Times)
Nov 11
The series of quality compliance scandals that has rocked Japanese manufacturing has unmasked the sobering truth that workers were often tempted to take shortcuts in quality testing as they struggled to keep up production at decaying and short-handed plants. (Nikkei)
Nov 09
Toshiba Corp. on Thursday announced its five-year business reform plan to revamp its operations, with thousands of global job cuts, a withdrawal from its nuclear plant construction business in Britain and a sell-off of a U.S. liquefied natural gas operation on the agenda. (Japan Times)
Nov 08
Japan Post Co. on Wednesday began transporting documents by drone in Fukushima Prefecture, the first operation of its kind in Japan, following easing of regulations to cope with labor shortages in the transport industry. (Japan Times)
Nov 07
Fishing season for snow crabs, a winter delicacy, began in the Sea of Japan on Tuesday. (NHK)
Nov 07
Toyota Motor reported record sales for the 6-month period to September thanks to demand in Asia, including China. (NHK)