Going to the toilet is usually a private and intimate experience.
However, Japan might be paving the way towards a futuristic experience for how we, um, excrete each day.
In Japan, tourists are marveling at ‘washlets’, high-tech toilets that offer a wide range of functions and possibilities. These include offering warmed toilet seats or a light spray of water to clean your behind.
These robotic toilets aren’t exactly new. Japan has championed these devices for several years already, and they even featured on an episode of The Simpsons back in 1999.
20 years later, it appears that us normal folk still aren’t used to these additional features to explore when we visit a bathroom.
“There were something like 15 buttons in Japanese and I didn’t know which one to press. there were strange symbols with sprays going into every direction…” explained French tourist Alex Weimer.
“I think when you first encounter them it’s a bit intimidating but we’ve been to Japan many times, now we’re used to them,” said his friend, Bernard James. “Japan leads the way in toilets technology.”
Just how popular are these high-tech toilets? It turns out that in the two decades since they appeared on The Simpsons, their popularity has exploded. Today, you can often find these ‘washlets’ in public toilets, hotels, and even installed in people’s private homes.
With a population of nearly 127 million, the market for these devices is huge.
If you would like your own Toto Toilet, then you can purchase one for the modest price of around 25,000 JPY (US$232). Japanese officials are expecting more than 500,000 tourists to experiment with these special toilets during the 2019 Rugby World Cup – would you be one of them?
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