The revolution has begun. Robots will now begin taking your order at Wendy’s locations.
They aren’t flippin’ patties
Unfortunately, Rosie the Robot won’t be flipping those square-pattied burgers in the back, which means people will still be stuck watching these awful Grill Skill training videos.
Instead, Wendy’s robots are coming to us in the form of kiosks. Similar to the ones you might see at the airport self-check in.
According to Darren Tristano, vice president of Technomic, a food-service research and consulting firm, “This move puts them [Wendy’s] at the forefront of the kiosk and tech movement.”
With 6,503 locations (miniscule in comparison to McDonald’s 36,000+) Wendy’s aims to implement these kiosks at 1,000 locations by the end of 2017.
They’ve got the speed to feed. The main reasoning behind this shift is that they want to reduce wait time during peak dining hours. Apparently, too many people took the words “fast” food literally and complained over the 10-minute waits.
Or, Wendy’s just wants to compete with Jimmy John’s and their “so fast, you’ll freak” title.
This is only phase one of the master plan
According to Tristano, it starts with kiosks and eventually becomes mobile-ordering and smartphone payments.
If he’s right, I sure will miss the days of blankly staring at the menu, humming “uhhhhhmmmm”, while the register worker gives me the evil-eyes.
Not to mention, I can already imagine a decade from now when this quintessential, “first job” is gone and people tell their kids, “Back in my day, your first job sucked. You had to take people’s orders and push buttons.”
I, along with all the other chains, am interested in seeing how this move pans out for the guinea pig of fast food automation.
Given the fact that Wendy’s burgers are Always Fresh, Never Frozen, it makes me wonder which chain restaurant will be the first to implement automated chefs that throw burgers in the microwave and drop the french fries in grease.
It can be fearful to think AI and machines taking your job, but as long as you are aware of the possibility before it happens, you can prepare. Not to mention, they will start by taking care of all our dirty work – leaving us more time to solve bigger challenges.
That’s why I started Quick Theories – a weekly newsletter with my thoughts on why you should adopt certain technology in your own creative way.