Japanese railways use AI to help customers find lost items

Japanese railway companies are turning to AI technology to improve services for customers searching for lost items.

Keikyu Corporation, which operates railways in and around Tokyo, says it receives around 200,000 inquiries a year about lost belongings. It will start using an AI-powered system next month to speed up the search service.

The technology uses a chat function in an app for users to enter details of the item, including when and where it was lost. The system cross-checks the details with information stored on the company's lost-and-found database.

Users can also upload images of similar-looking items and the system selects possible matches from the database.

Keikyu officials say the new system saves time and they can use that time to improve other services.

The AI search system is already in use by Kyushu Railway and Keio Corporation among other railway operators.