A friendly talking robot made by Skolkovo resident startup Promobot is to brighten up the journey for weary commuters on the Moscow metro system.

Metrosha the Promobot can chat to passengers, and take and print photos. Photo: Moscow Mayor official site.

Metrosha the robot first made an appearance at the end of last year at the Luzhniki station of the Moscow Central Ring rail line, where he wished passengers a happy new year. Now he will appear from time to time in the city’s metro stations to meet and greet passengers on public holidays, the Moscow mayor’s office said in an online statement. He can also take photos and print them on the spot.

It has not yet been decided which stations Metrosha will call in at. Currently, the robot is in the Moscow Metro’s central office at the Prospekt Mira station, where he has become hugely popular among metro employees, the mayor’s office said.

Promobot’s robots, designed to provide people with helpful information in crowded public places and entertain them, can converse with people they meet and later remember their faces. They have been known to crack jokes and even flirt.

Last summer, another Promobot named Alantim did a couple of guest stints as a guide at the Shchusev State Museum of Architecture, telling visitors about the architecture of Moscow’s famed metro system.

Earlier this week, it was announced that Promobot, a resident of Skolkovo’s IT cluster, had sold 40 robots to the Turkish company LUXRA TR. The Perm-based company’s robots have also been sold in many other countries, including the U.S., China and the U.K., as well as Russia.

Promobot hit the headlines last year when one of its robots was reported to have escaped from its testing lab.