LINE Fukuoka Develops LINE Official Accounts for On-campus Use With Kyushu University Students

• Students can now preorder “bento” (boxed) lunches and see how crowded each cafeteria is
• Aiming to make Kyushu University’s campus embody the “Smart City” concept through a co-creation project with the students and faculty

LINE Fukuoka (Location: Hakata Ward, Fukuoka; Representative Director, President, and Chief Executive Officer: Noritaka Ochiai) is pleased to announce today’s release of two LINE official accounts that aim to resolve inconveniences on campus developed with Kyushu University students.

About the LINE Official Accounts
1. “Kyushu University Cafeteria” (Q大食堂大図鑑): An account that lets users check how crowded each cafeteria is, and see this week’s menu.
2. “Makko-chan Bento” (まこっちゃん弁当): An account that lets users preorder “bento” (boxed) lunches

These two accounts were developed by students at a Kyushu University in a collaborative hackathon with the theme of “resolving inconveniences on campus.”

In accordance with the Comprehensive Partnership Agreement between LINE Fukuoka and Fukuoka City, we are promoting the city’s evolution into a “Smart City.” LINE Fukuoka values co-creation projects with local governments, private companies, and the public, and has launched many such projects that utilize LINE’s cutting-edge technology (such as AI and FinTech).

As a part of these efforts, LINE Fukuoka and a task force made up of volunteers from the Kyushu University faculty held a student hackathon in July 2019. Participating students took the lead in developing, operating, and improving LINE official accounts in an effort to get rid of inconvenience on campus.

The students came up with original ideas, created prototypes using the LINE Bot Designer¹, and then developed the LINE official accounts equipped with bots using the LINE Messaging API². LINE Fukuoka collaborated in the development of these accounts, having its staff members provide expert support by clarifying points and answering questions during the planning and development phases, and holding lectures and meetings at Kyushu University.

Today, the newly developed LINE official accounts will debut at the Engineer Cafe, which was opened by Fukuoka City in July of 2019 as a place for engineers to exchange ideas. The cafe offers an atmosphere where visiting engineers and people from outside of the university can openly exchange ideas or inspire each other.

Details about the new official accounts

Students participating in the hackathon split up into two teams to work on development. Both LINE official accounts were developed using the LINE Messaging API, and are equipped with a bot.

1. “Kyushu University Cafeteria” (Q大食堂大図鑑): An account that lets users check how crowded each cafeteria is, and see this week’s menu.

Due to Kyushu University’s large campus and multiple cafeterias, students previously faced issues such as walking a long way only to find that a cafeteria was very crowded and not knowing what was on the menu at a cafeteria before actually going.

The “Kyushu University Cafeteria” LINE official account is linked to sensors being researched on campus that can detect how crowded a cafeteria is. Based on the information received by these sensors, the account then recommends a cafeteria and time that will be the least crowded. Additionally, the account can display each cafeteria’s menu.

2. “Makko-chan Bento” (まこっちゃん弁当): An account that lets users preorder “bento” (boxed) lunches

Until now, the owner of the “Makko-chan Bento” shop had been using their own LINE account to easily accept orders. However, there were several complicated problems with this system, including being unable to thoroughly regulate the “last order” time for bento lunches, and the need for the differing numbers of bento lunches per order to be totaled manually.

To resolve these issues, the responsible team developed features that only show the lunches available for order on the menu, allow for cancellations, and more. These features have made it easier for “Makko-chan Bento” to efficiently estimate the type and number of lunches they need to prepare, and let users avoid missing out on buying their favorite lunch due to it being sold out. In the future, the team will consider further streamlining operation of the account through initiatives that include integrating cashless payment options such as LINE Pay.

Both of these accounts will be released for use on campus tomorrow (September 27). Please note that because these accounts are intended for use by Kyushu University students and faculty, we do not plan to release their LINE IDs to the general public.

• Hackathon Results Presentation Venue
– Name: Engineer Cafe
– Location: 1-15-30 Tenjin, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Pref. 810-0001

This cafe is part of Fukuoka City’s “Engineer Friendly Fukuoka” initiative aimed at making the city one where engineers can gather, flourish, and grow. Opened in July 2019 in the Fukuoka Akarenga Cultural Center as a space for engineers to interact, the cafe hosts a variety of events and skill-building seminars.

In the future, LINE Fukuoka will put even more energy into making Fukuoka a “Smart City” by further collaborating with local governments, private businesses, and educational institutions. Through our co-creations, we will strive to realize our vision of a “Life on LINE,” in which we will “pursue ‘WOW’ by becoming a life infrastructure that leverages lifestyle innovations to support all aspects of users’ lives” 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

¹: LINE Bot Designer: A free tool for creating prototypes in a short period of time. Users can freely design chatbots to fit their specific needs.

²: LINE Messaging API: An application programming interface (API) for achieving two-way communication with users through LINE accounts. With the LINE Messaging API, you can send one-way messages to LINE users as well as more optimized messages to specific users. In addition, you can use the LINE Messaging API as a customer relationship management (CRM) or business solution tool by linking users’ LINE accounts to your company’s existing database or private system (with user consent).  LINEBREAK Note: LINE Corporation does not save any customer data linked to LINE accounts.