Japan fancies itself as the country of the future. Following decades of recession, the highly-industrialized country is now trying to reclaim its position as a driving force in modern technology. But, what better way to do it than tantalize the imagination of more than 10 million spectators with its cutting-edge innovations at Tokyo Olympics 2020. Below is a sneak peek of Japanese technology that will debut at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Future Technology: ROBOT VILLAGE
Japan is one of the most automated nations on the planet. So it’s no surprise this Olympics will feature an army of swarming robots.
Citywide robots will be installed to “in an initiative towards a ‘universal future society’ where robots and information technologies that assist humans regardless of age, nationality or disabilities are commonplace.”
A large percentage of these will be based in Tokyo’s Odaiba neighborhood, which will play host to the athletes’ Olympic Village. This helpful and polite robots will coexist with millions of humans during the Olympics. It will help them with instant language translation, directions, hailing taxis, to driving them for sightseeing. In addition to the village, the robots will be installed in airports.
New technology invention in the form of Instant Language Translation
The English skill level in Japan, compared to other advanced nations is modestly low. While the number of foreigners learning to speak Japanese has skyrocketed in the past, there are still significant language barriers that tourists run into.
To cater the 206 National Olympic Committees sending athletes to Tokyo, Japan is developing instant language translation apps. Using these next-generation translation services, the average tourist set to descend on the metropolis will just get by fine.
A real-time translation app called VoiceTra bankrolled by National Institute of Information and Communications Technology supports up to 27 languages, with more to come during the games. NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest cellphone carrier has developed instant translation glasses that use cameras, text recognition technology and translation software to read and translate Japanese. Panasonic is also developing a palm-sized wearable technology that will translate Japan into 10 languages instantly and vice versa. It also intends to develop smartphone apps that can scan Japanese sign and whatever else its wearer see and translate them on the go.
Autonomous Taxis to ferry around the one million tourists
During the Olympics, an estimated 920,000 foreigners will roam on the metropolis on any given day. The Tokyo Games could see the first widespread use of Robot Taxi and autonomous taxis. Japanese carmakers such as Nissan and Toyota are rolling out driverless cars by 2020, while DeNA hopes to have self-driving taxis in use.
The Japanese government is committed to pass laws regulating the use of Robot Taxis by 2017.
Japanese Technology at its best in the form of 8K TV Broadcast
Last year, Sharp became the first electronics company to release an 8K television set to watch in the 7,680×4,320-pixel 8K resolution. During the event, Japan hopes to show off innovations at the Tokyo Olympics 2020 with 8K resolution TVs capable of outputting 3,840x2,160 pixel resolutions.
According to Advanced Television, the Olympics Broadcasting Services (OBS) will be broadcasting elected events, including the Opening and Closing Ceremonies and key games, for VR platforms both live as well as on demand, during the Games.
Jets will run on Algae-based Biofuel
Japan wants to turn waste into fuel to be used as biofuel in its planes as part of efforts to shift to cleaner fuels. Algae has remarkable potential as an alternative energy source. It is preferable over other green energies since it can it can produce 60 times more oil per acre and is relatively easy to grow. It can cut CO2 emissions by up to 70 percent compared to non-renewable fuels, and is far more efficient and cost effective.
Boeing aims to use fly jets fueled by algae. Over 40 organizations, including the University of Tokyo, Japan Airlines, All Nippon Airways, and the Japanese government aim to offer algae flights for the millions of tourists who will descend on Tokyo in 2020.
The Olympic Village Will Be Hydrogen Powered
The Japanese government plans on spending $330 million to improve hydrogen use making Japan a “Hydrogen Society” before the Olympic Games. Japan plans to build the entire Olympic Village hydrogen-powered. This includes press lounges, buses, athlete dorms and nearly everything cell-powered. Japan also plans on developing at least 6,000 cell-powered cars before the Olympic Games.
Japan Advanced Technology in the form of Artificial Meteor Shower
A Japanese astronomy startup called ALE wants to light up the sky with an artificial meteor shower. The meteor shower show will mimic asteroid shower patterns. ALE is developing a microsatellite that will be launched into space and shoot out tiny spheres of chemical that burns and glows like a star, while racing at 5km/sec.
Latest Technology from Japan: Superspeed Maglev Trains
The last time Tokyo hosted the Olympic Games in 1967, Japan introduced the Shinkansen bullet train to the world. This time, the nation is hopeful of serving half the million during the 2020 Summer Olympics with superspeed maglev trains. This trains can travel more than 600km/h. This high speed trail technology relies on magnetic levitation.
5G Wireless Connection will speed up your phone
Mobile operators in Japan are preparing to install 5G wireless networks that can run at high frequency in urban areas like Tokyo. NTT DoCoMo has already made progress in this area and is set to provide data rates between 1Gbps and 10Gbps.
Electronic Pass show what future technology will be like
Another one of the innovations at Tokyo Olympics 2020 is that visitors will be able to register their prints at airports and then make payments with facial recognition technology. It is aimed at reducing theft, boosting tourism dollars and providing data on speed.
The Wonder Japan Pass, the credit-card like device could also be used as a valid ID and payment system. It can verify the ticket holder at the Tokyo National stadium and several other places including the spectators’ hotel.
So, there it is! A long-list of modern technology from Japan.