Jake with a robot at Aloft Cupertino in California, tweeted by his father [Larry Cinadr]

A small but increasing number of hotels are adopting robots for check-in, room service and other duties, a move meant to eventually cut back on costs in one of the most challenging labor-driven industries.

On the extreme end, there is Henn-na, the world's first explicitly robot hotel, opened two years ago in Nagasaki, Japan. But other hotels are starting out slowly, adopting robots like "Hubert," who delivers items requested by guests to the Fairfield Inn and Suites in the southern California town of San Marcos, per The Coast News. The same small robot, made by Savioke, is also being used by hotels in Chicago, New York and Texas, reports Marketplace, the Minnesota Public Radio program.

What it means: The early adopters say the hotel robots add flair and — against the fear of a robot apocalypse — have only aided existing employees and not displaced any. Look for mobile robots to assume a growing presence in hotels around the world.

Go deeper

Ousted former U.S. attorney for SDNY to testify before House Judiciary Committee

Berman in October 2019 in New York City. Photo: Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

Geoffrey Berman, the former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, is scheduled to testify to the House Judiciary Committee next week on the circumstances of his forced resignation, Politico reports, citing a congressional aide.

Why it matters: As the top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, Berman oversaw high-profile cases that worried and angered President Trump and his inner circle, including an investigation into his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. His removal has added to allegations by Democrats that Attorney General Bill Barr has politicized the Justice Department under President Trump.

Stimulus outlook takes a hit even as coronavirus cases skyrocket

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

The pandemic is getting worse, and the question is whether the economic recovery will go with it.

Why it matters: America adding 7.5 million jobs over the last two months pales in comparison to 20+ million lost over the two months prior.

3 hours ago - Health

Texas governor mandates face masks in public spaces

Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) issued an executive order Thursday requiring all Texans to wear a face covering in public in counties with 20 or more positive coronavirus cases.

Why it matters: It's a dramatic reversal by the Republican governor that underscores the severity of the outbreak in Texas, which set a single-day record on Wednesday with more than 8,000 confirmed new cases. On June 3, Abbott issued an executive order banning local governments from imposing fines on people who don't wear masks in public.