Eswatini has set a trend that will revolutionise how African tourism establishments do business in the new normal through the launch of the Aura Aware social distancing device.
Following on from being the first full country in southern Africa to receive the WTTC Safe Travels Stamp, this is another example of Eswatini leading the way in the continent’s recovery from the Coronavirus pandemic.
Aura Aware is a social distance sensor that warns if customers do not maintain social distancing of at least 2 metres.
The smart device is an LED panel that has a laser depth sensor at its base. It is capable of alerting people via audio-visual cues when they break the social distancing norm. It changes from green to red, to warn a person that they are too close.
It can be synched via an app that enables the user to adjust the distance and turn on the beeping notification. It is also a plug-in device, which means you can either plug it into a standard power charger, or a power bank.
The aesthetic device comes with a free app to adjust preferred distance and sound settings. It has a wood finished baseplate that enables it to blend in perfectly with many interior designs.
This is a proudly Swazi initiative brought by NG Corp in association with Hilton Garden Inn, the first establishment to adapt this technology in Eswatini.
The device is used by thousands of businesses around the world, including IKEA, Hertz and Vodafone.
NG Corp partnered with Aura Aware based in Amsterdam in the Netherlands to bring this device to Eswatini.
NG Group Director Jason Ning said they are ready to supply Eswatini and further extend to the rest of the continent.
Speaking during the launch from Amsterdam in the Netherlands via Zoom Video Conferencing, Aura Aware cofounder and Chief Executive Officer Janneke van den Heuval said the device is an ‘elegant way to welcome customers without using non-interactive stickers and signs.’
“We are excited to partner with NG Corp to bring the device to Eswatini and we congratulate Eswatini for being the first country in Africa to use this technology. It is a great idea to maintain healthy social distancing during the pandemic.”
ETA Chief Executive Officer Linda Nxumalo said they are very excited about the launch of the Aura Smart Distance device.
“Technology is very important in all sectors. As we continue to navigate through the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, we have seen that it is important for us to embrace the new normal. This has challenged us to be more innovative and look for astute ways to service our customers and visitors in Eswatini for them to feel the royal experience,” she said.
Minister of Tourism and Environmental Affairs Moses Vilakati said he is grateful for this technology and it is in line with His Majesty’s 2022 Vision.
“We will soon do away with the social distancing stickers that you see all over establishments through this technology. The device will help businesses to manage the new normal, acting as a cop for social distancing. It is such activity that when we harness could unearth great potential and enable us to do more with less,” he said.
“Borders are opening and people are calling and asking what will they find in Eswatini to make sure that COVID-19 protocols are being followed to the letter. If I get a call, now I will gladly give them this update. This is also good for our domestic tourism. We want to see a gradual transition in the use of this technology,” he further stated.
See how the device works in the video below.