Food Tech

Was Wendy’s AI Chatbots On Your 2023 Bingo Card? They Are Here and Ready To Take Your Drive Through Order

Wendy's is revolutionizing fast food with AI-driven chatbots taking orders at their drive-thrus. While the technology aims to improve efficiency, early tests have shown mixed results with accuracy ratings as low as 80%. Brace yourself for a future where Wendy's and other restaurants embrace drive-thru robots to enhance the customer experience.

Published on 19/05/2023

Wendy's is revolutionizing fast food with AI-driven chatbots taking orders at their drive-thrus. While the technology aims to improve efficiency, early tests have shown mixed results with accuracy ratings as low as 80%. Brace yourself for a future where Wendy's and other restaurants embrace drive-thru robots to enhance the customer experience.

Published on 19/05/2023

A.I. drive-through robots are coming for your order and probably your job. But in this case, they mostly just want to get you their food faster. Hopefully, this will be accomplished by freeing up real human employees so they can focus on making your food and providing higher quality overall service. But what does high quality service look like when robots work your drive-through or should I say run the world?

Wendy’s is the latest fast food chain, to try and make your “experience” better by jumping on the AI bandwagon. They will be using Google Cloud AI software and its all around robot superpowers to create an AI-driven chatbot that will take customers’ orders at drive-thrus. In theory, it should be able to understand complex speech patterns and orders from people in a rush to get their Baconator and go. Supposedly it will be able to answer frequently asked questions too. So, save your questions about the universe and Wendy’s relation to it all for your next drive-thru visit. I’m sure it will be very enlightening for both you and the Wendy’s AI robot. But don’t worry, when the AI gets confused and thinks you said “shaken” instead of “bacon”, there will be a real human nearby to fix the order.

Columbus, Ohio is where Wendy’s plans to test their “FreshAI” which seems to be the name of the new bot. If the pilot program works out, there is a very good chance that the next time you roll into Wendy’s to order that Bacon Double Cheeseburger and Chocolate Shake, it could be from FreshAI or RoboWendy as I like to call it.

Although this all sounds pretty far out there, Wendy’s is only one fast food chain in a long line of fast food chains trying to cut costs, deal with short staffing issues and speed up wait times with AI and chatbots. McDonald’s has also been working with IBM to create its own automated order taking (AOT) technologies since 2022. They’re already testing chatbot drive-thrus in a variety of Illinois restaurants with a crazy low accuracy rating of 80%, which is far from the 95% that they’re hoping for; Meaning that these chatbots aren’t exactly making fast food much “faster.” There are tons of people on social media who have posted videos of these McDonald’s robots screwing up their orders left and right. Needless to say, their technology hasn’t quite been perfected just yet.

Still not quite excited for the AI fast food revolution?! Well too bad, because it’s coming and so are a bunch of other restaurant robots. Sonic, Carls Jr, Hardees, Panera, Popeyes, Checkers, and more are all working on their own versions of drive-thru AI tech, hopefully with some better results.

Written by Joshua Varkey

A finance and marketing intern at Hungry Pixel, where he combines his passion for food, drinks, and branding to create engaging content. As a passionate storyteller, Josh aims to captivate audiences with fascinating insights into the origins and artistry of our favourite culinary and beverage experiences.

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