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Could drones replace waiters?

Monday, February 09, 2015 - 01:37

A drone called the ''Infinium Serve'' could revamp your dining out experience. The flying robot is part of the wait staff at a Singapore restaurant and delivers food directly to patrons. Sharon Reich reports.

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STORY: Your order's coming right up ... thanks to this drone. It's called "Infinium Serve" and could be the next generation of waiters serving you. At a recent demonstration in Singapore, patrons at a restaurant used iPads to place their orders, which were sent directly to the kitchen. After staff typed the corresponding table and order number into a computer, the "Infinium Servers" were able to deliver. Junyang Woon is CEO of developer Infinium Robotics. (SOUNDBITE) (English) INFINIUM ROBOTICS CEO JUNYANG WOON SPEAKING: "The goal is to boost productivity in F&B (food and beverage) outlets, and to use current existing manpower efficiently, so that they (the waiters) will not just run about, to the kitchen and to the dining area, but spend their time usefully to interact with the customers, so that the customers will have a pleasant dining experience and will be able to enjoy having the food, and not worrying about whether they can get the attention of the waiters in the restaurant." The drones are equipped with infrared sensors onboard, to help them avoid oncoming obstacles and fly in formations without colliding. The cost for the robotic waitstaff is anywhere from $8,000 - $40,000 (USD) depending on the features. Woon says the payoff is that restauranteurs can keep human stoff focused on making customers happy and building a returning clientelle. There are still a few kinks to work out ... but looks like flying waiters are becoming a reality.

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Could drones replace waiters?

Monday, February 09, 2015 - 01:37