Innovation That Matters

The platform is capable of processing voice orders in mobile apps, kiosks and drive-thru scenarios | Photo source

Voice-ordering kiosks limit contact at restaurants during COVID


A California company has developed a voice assistant that can be added to restaurant kiosks to make them touch-free

Spotted: The use of restaurant self-service kiosks has been growing, but their reliance on the touchscreen has turned a convenience into a drawback in the age of COVID-19, when people are reluctant to touch something that many others have touched before them. To help address this, Sensory Inc., an artificial intelligence provider in Silicon Valley, is offering food retailers a voice assistant for kiosks that combines biometrics, computer vision and customer analytics. 

The platform has been customized to serve the quick-service restaurant industry. It is capable of processing voice orders in mobile apps, kiosks and drive-thru scenarios.

As with existing systems, the kiosks use automatic speech recognition and natural language understanding to translate speech to text. However, they also collect biometric data on each customer and can analyze the customer’s voice data for demographic information and emotional state. This helps the AI to make personalised recommendations and upsell.  

The AI assistant can also identify repeat customers and make suggestions based on their purchase history. 

In a press release, Todd Mozer, CEO at Sensory, noted that the machines are designed not only for convenience but to help companies improve their branding. “We believe the next wave of interactive consumer experiences will be driven by companies that want to own and control their branded voice experience for use in specific contexts or domains. These businesses may want to know more about their customer’s usage and not only understand what they are saying, but who they are and how their experience is going.”

Restaurant kiosks are not the only things going touchless in the age of COVID. At Springwise, we have seen an explosion in touchless tech this year. Innovations have included a contactless system for elevator panels and touchless beauty product testers.

Written By: Lisa Magloff

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