Spark says it has brought to New Zealand 100 Alpha 1 robots, manufactured by Chinese company Ubtech, to stand in queues at its stores on behalf of customers. However it has not said how customers will be chosen to receive these robot proxies
“Each robot is paired with a Spark customer and kitted out with a device that lets the customer live-stream into the queue from wherever they are in the lead up to the phone going on sale,” Spark said. “Customers can control the robots’ actions through a smartphone app, getting them to do press ups, kung Fu, yoga, mimic Olympic sports and even dance to their favourite tune.
Spark GM customer and marketing, Clive Omerod, said that, by having a robot queue for them, customers would be able to get on with their lives and still be first to get the newest device. However Spark has given no indication of the process by which customers will be selected to receive a robot queuer.
It said only that, on launch day, “customers who queued in Spark’s Robot Queue will not only get the newest, most covetable device first, they’ll also get to keep their robot.”