Your Order at the Drive Thru Will Soon Be Taken by a Robot
I never liked it when the you call a business and it is not answered by a real person and you have to listen to an entire menu only to be transferred to another recording. I know I am not going to like the way the fast food industry is headed. With artificial intelligence programs like ChatGPT being used by many companies, burger franchise Wendy’s is reportedly getting ready to deploy it where you wouldn’t expect: the drive-thru. The Wall Street Journal reports Wendy’s teamed up with Microsoft for an artificial intelligence chatbot designed to “streamline” the process between you asking for a burger and fries in your car, and getting the food in your face.
I like to have interaction with a real human in case I have a question about my order such as, “do you think that the meal is a better than just ordering a burger and fries?” Also, my car never seems to understand my diction. It often responds, “I’m sorry, can you say your request a different way.” It is so frustrating! The software has the difficult task of figuring out what a customer wants — like if they say “shake” instead of using Wendy-speak, “Frosty” — and it also has to filter out background noise from a customer’s car, such as screaming kids or Screaming Trees blaring from a radio.
It can also up-sell customers on larger drinks and other options, and alert them to daily specials. A test run at a Columbus, Ohio, restaurant went well, said Wendy’s chief information officer Kevin Vasconi to the paper, noting, “It’s at least as good as our best customer service representative, and it’s probably on average better.”
The company insists the technology won’t be used to replace human employees, but to make their jobs easier.