MSC Cruises, already known for employing technology to enhance the guest experience, have announced that they are introducing the world’s first virtual personal cruise assistant. Named ZOE, the voice-enabled artificial intelligence (AI) tool will be found in every stateroom. ZOE can speak seven languages, answer hundreds of questions about the cruise and provide information about on board services, guidance and suggestions or help to book a service. An easy to use device – guests simply say, “OK ZOE”, and she’s ready to help. The advanced voice recognition feature makes it easy for everyone to control and access information using only voice commands.
ZOE will launch onboard the brand new MSC Bellissima, arriving in Spring 2019, and will then be available on each following new ship, including the upcoming MSC Grandiosa in 2019 and MSC Virtuosa in 2020.
Gianni Onorato, MSC Cruises’ CEO said:
“The cruise experience is constantly evolving to become ever-richer, offering an increasingly wide choice of services and facilities. In 2017, we introduced MSC for Me, an industry-leading digital innovation platform that revolutionized the way that guests were able to customize and personalize their experience. The technology was built into the very design of the new ships, incorporated into every step of the development process of each prototype, from conception to construction.”
“This was just the starting point in providing a connected cruise experience. There was a core guest need to be met, which was to find answers to common questions in a quick and easy way, enabling guests to make the most of their vacation. We researched the latest connected technologies and identified voice assistants and Artificial Intelligence as the way to meet this need, and the work on ZOE began.”
This ground-breaking AI guest service has been developed in partnership with the MSC Cruises’ Business Innovation team and HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics. The collaboration has brought together the best-in-class expertise in voice-enabled technology and cruise expertise as part of a shared vision for connected living, now extended to the cruise industry.
ZOE’s physical design features advanced audio with far field microphones and a professional quality speaker to provide the best audio experience. Guests will enjoy fast response times, thanks to the integration of a top-of-the-line quad-core processor, and also have the opportunity to connect their phones directly to the device through Bluetooth to enjoy music, podcasts and more directly in their staterooms. In the future, ZOE will be able to offer further personalization and embedded experiences, and will also become a cross-channel personal assistant that will take on new forms within MSC for Me.
ZOE has been designed to enrich MSC for Me by interacting with the in-stateroom TV. Long-term innovation partner Samsung Electronics, designed the Hotel Management System software that allows the personal assistant to connect with the TV to provide guests further in-depth information and other guest services.
For more details on MSC Cruises, ZOE Personal Cruise Assistant, visit MSC Cruises website