Japan: Nissan comes up with self-driving chairs, ‘Wall-E’-style future imminent

NISSAN has just proven that the future is now with autonomous chairs that get rid of the arduous task of standing in a queue – thus catapulting the human race that much closer to making fiction reality.

In a company video released on Tuesday, Nissan showed how their self-driving chairs moved patrons waiting outside a busy restaurant along in an orderly manner. Once the person at the front of the queue gets up from their chair, the empty chair moves to the end of the queue while everyone else moves forward – all while seated.

Nissan said the system is similar to the one used in their autonomous vehicle technology, which can sense other vehicles around and reacts accordingly.

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According to an AFP report, published by Japan Today, the company said: “[It] appeals to anyone who has queued outside for hours outside a crowded restaurant: it eliminates the tedium and physical strain of standing in line.”

Sound familiar? There is a striking parallel between Nissan’s chairs and Pixar’s animated film, ‘Wall-E’, in which the entire human race lives in chairs that zip around so they never have to walk.


Some have already clocked the similarities:

While not quite at the level of the hover-chairs in ‘Wall-E’, Nissan’s autonomous chairs are certainly a glimpse into the future that could be.

Earlier this year, Nissan unveiled similarly automated office chairs equipped with technology used for assisted parking. The chairs responded to commands like clapping, and can arrange themselves neatly once a meeting room has been vacated.

The queuing chairs might be a great solution to long lines at tourist attractions such as Tokyo Disneyland though, which is notorious among travelers for having queues that can take up to three and a half hours to clear.

Long queues and waiting times at restaurants in the Japanese city are also common. According to City-Cost, the restaurant with the longest queue in Tokyo is a tendon joint called Kaneko Hannosuke – where patrons have waited up to three hours in line for a table.