The restaurant of the future: how technology is helping to improve the guest experience?


Mobile Apps for Restaurant Callosa Digital
The restaurant of the future

In the fantasies of automation adepts, future restaurants look like space stations packed with technology. Everything is laconic, futuristic, practical, no "bows" in the form of staff smiles, comfort and other "excesses". What is the real point of introducing technology in restaurants? And what directions do Restaurant Tech highlight?

It is generally accepted that restaurants will become fully automated, exclude human interaction, and instead of the atmosphere there will be a "space void".

But in reality, the essence of technology adoption is to enable operators to create more efficient, sustainable and customized experiences (see Delivery App for Restaurants for more details).

How quickly technology can penetrate the restaurant industry is clearly demonstrated by the events of recent months. And, perhaps, skeptics will continue to argue that the introduction of "remaining" technologies is "just around the corner", in my opinion, it is necessary to follow technological trends on an ongoing basis and gradually implement them in order to be able to quickly adapt the business model of a restaurant to changing guest behavior.

How the implemented technology can be perceived differently is shown by the example of Pizza Hut, which some time ago introduced an interactive tabletop, at which the guest both made and received an order. It would seem that only yesterday this technology looked like entertainment, but today it has become an obligatory part of the institution's work.

According to the Restaurant mobile app research, the restaurant technology ecosystem is globally divided into two groups, some focused on improving the guest experience and others on improving the efficiency of operations. Below, within these groups, there are recognizable names of both Russian and foreign IT companies (groups 1 and 2), and in the third group, foreign organizations are mostly represented, with the exception of the Russian voice chatbot Aimylogic and the robot cook Bowlton.

As noted above, restaurants need to be at the forefront of innovation, be it customization or digitalization. One of those testing new technologies is Starbucks, which is introducing a new, advanced Mastrena coffee machine, equipped with Internet of Things (IoT) sensors connected to the Deep Brew artificial intelligence system and directly connected to a support center.

Based on the analysis of collected data and consumer insights, the technology allows the company to offer guests “in-depth” personalization of drinks and food. Dodo has taken a similar course towards personalization in Russia with its new product - the Drinkit coffee chain.

Evolving AI-powered technologies allow managers to monitor guests' emotions in real time and react immediately to improve and “expand” the service. For example, Astamanyan's coffee shop in St. Petersburg used AI to determine the mood of a guest and offered the appropriate drink, and by reading biometrics and without the need to present loyalty cards, it allowed the barista to determine if it was a regular guest and then build communication accordingly. AI can also track how long guests have been in the queue, and how many were served or not served in the institution, especially when it comes to scheduling a restaurant's work during peak hours.

Artificial intelligence helps to create personalized menus, especially, this will increase in the very near future due to the fact that in many establishments, due to coronavirus restrictions, digital menus are being introduced more and more. Digital menus can change quickly and suggest meals based on their food preferences (gluten-free, for example).

And finally, it's worth noting the most futuristic technology for restaurants so far - augmented reality AR. This technology will allow you to project dishes on the table in 3D, creating the feeling that they are in reality on the table. This should improve the level of the guest's expectations of food, as well as reduce food waste, because this way the guest will have a better idea of ​​what he is ordering. Food Ordering App for Restaurants is a perfect example here.

It is clear that the companies that have made the best use of big data and technology, first of all think about how it solves their business problems, improves the guest experience and increases the efficiency of operations. At the same time, all technologies implemented in the restaurant, especially those that improve the experience of guests, should be paralleled with the process of updating the restaurant concept, positioning, further communications and other strategies for the harmonious integration of such changes.