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If you’ve ever been to a supermarket in Japan, you’ll know that throughout the store, there are people offering free samples and prompting various products. They are real flesh and blood humans. This Asahi beer salesperson is not.

In Japan, this is called “demonstration sales.” Via Game Over, you can watch a nine minute Japanese language video about the ins and outs of this marketing strategy. (Or not. It is nine minutes long.)

But why pay real people money to do this when you can make a CG person to do it? 

Twitter user Ryuusei spotted this “CG like lady” selling beer at the supermarket.

Here’s a look at how the display works.

In Japanese, these digital signs are called “virtual mannequins.” They’ve apparently been around for over seven years, but I’ve never seen them in supermarkets before.

Last year, a virtual mannequin was selling Asahi’s “The Dream” branded beer. I never saw one in stores. 

I have seen a CG person at Narita Airport welcoming travelers to Japan at the gate.

It also appears that more virtual mannequins have gigs at a bank in Shiga Prefecture. They even dress seasonally. 


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