Testing of "Omotenashi Guide", a universal design-compatible multilingual audio guidance system at Umeda Station and two other stations

 Osaka Metro and Yamaha Corporation (Head Office: Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture; President and Representative Executive Officer: Takuya Nakata; hereafter, Yamaha) are testing a multilingual information system in Osaka Metro stations using an app developed by Yamaha, the “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide.”
 The test aims to improve the provision of information to foreign visitors to Japan and passengers who have difficulty understanding audio announcements; it provides information when Osaka Metro service is temporarily suspended and announcements on manners, etc. in multiple languages, as well as displays information in Japanese and translations of that information into multiple languages on smartphones, etc.
 This verification test strives to examine the usability of the app and review expansion in the future to create an environment where customers can safely and securely use Osaka Metro.

  1. Name of service
    “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide” for announcements 

  2. Date of test launch
    Mar. 1, 2018 (Thur.)

  3. Test stations
    Umeda Sta. (Midosuji Line), Namba Sta. (Midosuji Line, Sennichimae Line), Tennoji Sta. (Midosuji Line)

  4. Test content
     (1) Station staff will select phrases recorded on a tablet according to operation conditions to provide audio announcements in 4 languages (service information, guidance on manners).
     (2) Announcements will be displayed in a language selected by passengers (available in 4 languages; *more languages planned) on smartphones to which the “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide” app has been downloaded.

    *4 languages (Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean)

    (image of app utilization)

  5. About the Yamaha “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide”
     This is an information system using a sound-based universal design developed by Yamaha that overcomes language and hearing barriers to enable everyone to understand announcements.
     Facilities that adopt the “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide” can translate the content of announcements into various languages simply by launching the app and using a smartphone microphone to pick up the audio.
     In addition, since transmission is by sound, even devices not connected to the internet can pick up information. To date, verification tests have been conducted in many municipalities, airports, commercial facilities, and tourist facilities, and actions are being taken to turn this into a service based on the test results obtained so far.

    “Omotenashi (Hospitality) Guide” website: http://omotenashiguide.jp/

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