AI restaurant technology trends
Robotics and smart kiosks are still in their infancy. The following are some AI restaurant trends that have been more widely adopted:
Business Insider predicts that 80% of businesses already use chatbots or plan to use them by 2020. Chatbots can help restaurants provide customer support around the clock. This AI technology trend is growing in popularity because it provides information to customers depending on pre-determined factors, such as their position in the sales funnel.
Domino’s Pizza announced in February 2017, that it improved its Facebook chatbots to allow anyone to order any item from their menu. The chatbots will ask the customer relevant information such as whether they want delivery or collection. Customers only have to enter the word “pizza” to start the ordering process. Given that Domino’s Pizza’s focus on technology has helped it to reach approximately $4.7 billion in global sales annually, it is no wonder that Domino’s Senior Vice President and Chief Digital Officer, Dennis Maloney, stated:
“Launching Messenger ordering with Pizza Profiles was a great first step, but Dom’s ordering capabilities are continuing to advance as Domino’s AnyWare technology evolves. We think of ourselves as a brand in progress and wanted to create an even bigger and better ordering experience for customers.”
Starbucks’ My Starbucks barista was launched in 2017 and enables customers to be able to speak into the app to order food. Customers can also change their drinks order using this method. The chatbot is designed to replicate the interaction with a human barista. AI is used to process orders through a message interface. This voice-enabled chatbot also provides the opportunity for customers to pay for their orders.
Starbucks also continues the AI restaurant technology trend by introducing the ‘Starbucks Reorder’ skill for Amazon Alexa. Customers use voice computing to say “Alexa, order my Starbucks” to place an order for their usual food and drink. Starbucks has previously utilized other restaurant technologies, like mobile payments. Therefore, it’s no surprise that they continue to take advantage of the latest trends in restaurant AI.
Utilizing the power of chatbots isn’t just reserved for the large food restaurants. Eateries of any size can benefit from the AI capabilities of chatbots. Companies like Say2eat help restaurants to engage with more customers using chatbots. Say2eat offers restaurant-branded chatbots via Facebook Messenger, Amazon Echo, and SMS.
Food service apps are now utilizing AI to benefit the restaurant industry, not just on a customer service level but also to improve the quality of food.
Founded in 2013, TellSpec is an AI company that has developed a hand-held scanner to classify the contents of food at a molecular level. They use bioinformatics techniques and learning algorithms to provide information about the ingredients and other details about food. A light is beamed directly onto the food item to read chemical compounds before the information is uploaded through TellSpec’s analytics systems. Restaurateurs can receive the data about the food via their smartphones.
This type of AI can benefit the restaurant industry because TellSpec says that its technology can identify harmful substances in food. Substances that cause allergies can also be identified. Calories and macronutrients are recognized to provide customers with more information about the composition of their food. This AI technology provides benefits in relation to food safety and serves as a verification system and safeguard for restaurants. Customers are becoming increasingly concerned about the origins and composition of their food. AI technology such as TellSpec gives customers confidence due to the transparency in relation to nutritional values and other relevant information.
Invest in your restaurant
Cost savings and an improved customer experience drives AI technology trends in the restaurant industry. The benefits of AI are being realized by large and small restaurants. Additionally, it appears that the benefits of using AI overshadow the risks, hence the growth of applications like chatbots.
Although some fear that the increased use of AI will mean that humans will no longer be required, restaurant giants like McDonald’s maintain that humans will be given different duties that can’t be performed by machines. No matter what type of AI you’re considering adopting in your restaurant, you’ll still need your employees, although you may need to provide them with new tasks.
It takes a dedicated effort to ensure that your scheduling practices are top-notch, but the benefits to your bottom line are well worth the effort. Schedule time to chat and see a demo of Deputy’s workforce management solution with its tasking functionality to organize your restaurant employees and keep them up-to-date with their new tasks: