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Port Authority Debuts Avatar at Newark Liberty Airport

She smiles, answers questions and can guide you to the nearest rest room or to your connecting flight.

Heather Perry, Getty Images

But don’t try and shake her hand.

That’s because “she” is an avatar, the latest high-tech venture at New York’s three major airports.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey unveiled the device Monday at Newark Liberty and La Guardia airports.

Those two, along with JFK Airport, will be the first airports in North America to get an avatar this summer. The Port Authority is renting them for about $180,000 for six months.

They cost about $250,000 each.

Port Authority officials also say they will add 100 power poles at the airports for travelers to charge their handheld devices. And its customer service staff will grow by 20 percent.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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