MSC, cruise, stateroom, virtual, personal assistant, ZOE, voice, activate, technology, artificial intelligence, AI, room, cabin, questions
Photo: MSC Cruises

World’s first “virtual personal cruise assistant”

Powered by artificial intelligence, Zoe has been designed to eventually be placed in every stateroom to “enrich the cruise vacation”.

Zoe, “the world’s first virtual personal cruise assistant”, is poised to take MSC Cruises’ guest services to a new level with technology that promises to “further enrich the cruise vacation”.

Developed in partnership with Harman Connected Services and Samsung Electronics, Zoe is a voice-enabled artificial intelligence tool that has started to be deployed in every stateroom.

The circular black box can speak seven languages, answer hundreds of questions about the cruise, help to book a service and provide information about on board services, guidance and suggestions.

To activate the device, guests say, “OK ZOE”, and she’s ready to help. “She” has been programmed to respond to more than 800 of the most commonly asked questions, with thousands of different variants of each question.

MSC says it is a first in the cruise industry and “another example of how MSC Cruises continues to lead the way by employing technology to enhance the guest experience”.

Zoe will launch on MSC Bellissima, whose maiden voyage begins this month, and will then be available on each following new ship including the upcoming MSC Grandiosa in 2019 and MSC Virtuosa in 2020.

Digital innovation
“The cruise experience is constantly evolving to become ever-richer, offering an increasingly wide choice of services and facilities,” said Gianni Onorato, MSC Cruises’ chief executive.

“In 2017, we introduced MSC for Me, an industry-leading digital innovation platform that revolutionised the way that guests were able to customise and personalise their experience. The technology was built into the very design of the new ships, incorporated into every step of the development process of each prototype, from conception to construction.

He continued: “This was just the starting point in providing a connected cruise experience. There was a core guest need to be met, which was to find answers to common questions in a quick and easy way, enabling guests to make the most of their vacation. We researched the latest connected technologies and identified voice assistants and artificial intelligence as the way to meet this need.”

Related stories

MSC to launch new ultra-luxury brand

MSC unveils advanced guest tech

Trends in hospitality for 2018