Hokkaido University-Based TIL, AWL, and Chowa Giken Collaborate to Develop COVID-19 Solutions

Hokkaido University Business Spring-based Startups TIL, AWL, and Chowa Giken to start development of COVID-19 Solutions

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TIL Inc. (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, President and CEO Kei Fujinami, hereinafter referred to as "the Company"), which is developing technology for an AI voice recorder, the AI camera solution-focused AWL Inc. (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, President and CEO Muneharu Kitaide, hereinafter referred to as "AWL"), and Chowa Giken Inc. (Head Office: Sapporo City, Hokkaido, President Takuya Nakamura, hereinafter referred to as "Chowa Giken"), which is focused on AI algorithm development, are working around the clock to develop new countermeasures against the COVID-19 pandemic, with solutions focused on developing technology to secure the safety of people on-site for retail stores.​

[The Catalyst for the Initiative]

With the announcement of the State of Emergency within Japan by Prime Minister Abe, the COVID-19 pandemic is poised to freeze Japanese society in its tracks. Even within this turmoil, retail stores are attempting to secure measures to combat the epidemic and continue business so that society can function. However, they are faced with huge hurdles in individually implementing sustainable safety measures in the mid-to-long term that would help to prevent an outbreak and a subsequent lockdown.

Against this looming threat, the three AI ventures are involved in AI camera development, algorithm development, and an AI voice recorder solution, and are cooperating to rapidly develop solutions that will keep society moving forward despite the oncoming tide of COVID-19.​

[List of Functions in Development]

The following technologies are currently in development by the three startups:

  • ​​Solutions to prevent customer harassment and other problems during sales of hygiene products

Through camera audio and video analysis, measures are enacted to protect employees from "Customer Harassment" such as requests and claims originating from disputes over masks, disinfectants, etc. Employees, store managers, and the head office are alerted when trouble is detected, and authorities are alerted in extreme cases of malicious behavior.

  • Congestion detection and warning system for cash registers

Through camera audio and video analysis, when a predetermined amount of congestion near the cash register or trouble between customers is detected, employees, store managers, head office, etc., are notified to support an appropriate response.

  • Distance detection between customers

Camera video analysis measures body temperature at the employee entrances to detect those suspected of having a fever. Employees, store managers, head office, etc. are alerted in real-time, facilitating appropriate responses.

  • Automated mask detection and announcement function 

Camera video analysis automatically detects customers who are not wearing face masks, and the number of people, as well as percentages, is displayed on a dashboard for each store, alerting employees, store managers, head office, etc. in real-time as needed to support an appropriate response.

  • Customer-to-customer distance detection

Camera video analysis automatically detects the number and percentage of customers in a situation where the distance between customers is closer than a predetermined value, displaying the number and percentage of each store on a dashboard, alerting employees, store managers, head office, etc. in real-time as needed.  

  • Track number of contacts between staff and customers

Camera video analysis determines the presence or absence of contact between a clerk and a customer. The density of people within a given store is automatically detected, and if the number of close contacts exceeds a predetermined amount, the data is fed to a dashboard, while simultaneously alerting employees, store managers, head office, etc. in real-time. 

  • In-store population density measurement

Camera video analysis measures the size of the store, the number of visitors, and the amount of time each visitor is in a store. When the population density of the store is exceeded, the number and percentage of people in each store is fed to a dashboard, alerting employees, store managers, head office, etc. in real-time if necessary.  

  • Alcohol disinfection detection

Camera video analysis automatically detects whether employees or customers have followed alcohol disinfection protocols, and data on the number of people and percentages for each store is fed to a dashboard, alerting employees, store managers, head office, etc. in real-time if necessary.  

In addition, solutions that utilize image and speech recognition are in development for rapid deployment across retail shops. 

[Services Featured by TIL]

Our AI voice recorder solution "RECORiS" provides security for managers, employees and consumers. Within any place, there is the possibility for various problems that could occur when dealing with customers on-site. Communication errors, accidents/troubles, complaints ... TIL saves all on-site communications in text format using a proprietary voice recorder device and software. When the AI detects a prohibited phrase or a loud voice, it automatically notifies the operation center.
Data saved as text can be searched by a person in charge, and searched based on date and time, place, word, etc., to be used as evidence when responding to an accident. In addition to troubleshooting, the data can be used to improve service/sales quality and marketing.

[Awarded the Title of "Hokkaido University Venture"]
In March 2019, TIL was awarded under the “Hokkaido University Venture Certification System”, which was launched at Hokkaido University in April 2016. We continue to contribute to the national and regional economies by accelerating the commercialization of research seeds, while pushing forward with Hokkaido University and other companies in order to further enhance research and education. 

[Company Profile]
TIL Inc.
Chief Executive Officer: Kei Fujinami
Location: 1-12-4 Kudankita, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 102-0073
Established: October 2017
Content: Research of solutions using IoT and AI 
URL: https://tilab.jp

AWL Inc.
Chief Executive Officer: Muneharu Kitaide, President
Location: 1-12-4 Kudankita, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 102-0073
Established: June 2016
Business: AI Camera Solutions Business
URL: https://awl.co.jp

Chowa Giken Inc.
Chief Executive Officer: Takuya Nakamura 
Location: Room 305 Hokudai Business Spring, 12-2, Kita-21-Nishi, Kita-ku, Sapporo 001-0021 
Established: November 2009
Nature of business: AI algorithm development
URL: https://www.chowagiken.co.jp/

For inquiries please contact
TIL Inc.
Kei Fujinami
Email:
​info@tilab.jp

Source: TIL Inc.

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Categories: Retail

Tags: AI, Corona, COVID-19, IoT, Retail, Speech recognition


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