Air New Zealand passengers at Sydney Airport will be receiving help from a robotic worker this week in a five-day experiment.

The airline partnered with Commonwealth Bank in using Chip Candroid, the bank's social humanoid robot. Candroid can interact with and assist Air NZ customers checking in at the gate.

Air New Zealand chief digital officer Avi Golan says "this partnership and experiment with Commbank and Chip is another way we are pushing the boundaries to ensure we remain at the forefront of technology which will allow us to further enhance the experience we offer our customers".

"We are also experimenting with potential enhancements of the future, including the idea of our cabin crew one day using Microsoft's HoloLens augmented reality viewers on board our aircraft," Golan said.


The Candroid comes out of Commonwealth Bank's Sydney Innovation Lab which it established in late 2016.

Tiziana Bianco, general manager of Innovation Labs, said "this experiment is a great example of why we invested in social robotics; working collaboratively with an innovative client like Air New Zealand, while also engaging some of the brilliant minds from UTS' Centre for Artificial Intelligence".

"It is a wonderful opportunity to explore the possibilities of a horizon technology such as social robotics, and what it might enable in the future."