How Technology Is Affecting Restaurants

According to Restaurant Business Online, we are now in the digital era of restaurants. Technology has been slowly growing more prevalent in eateries, with touchscreen cash registers and card scanners at the table becoming increasingly common.  That’s not all that’s going on, however. Mobile devices have changed the way people do many things, including the way we eat. If you’re thinking about taking online chef courses or pursuing a career in culinary arts, it’s important to stay up on all of the new technological developments.

Mobile reservations and preordering
With apps like OpenTable, diners can make reservations to the restaurants they want to visit while they’re on the go. This trend is likely to continue, and you can expect to see even more mobile apps with a focus on making the restaurant experience more enjoyable and seamless in the future. According to a National Restaurant Association survey, 53 percent of millennials and 26 percent of baby boomers would use restaurant tech options if given a chance. Those people will likely get a chance to do so in the coming years, as many restaurants are now either building or using apps that allow for mobile ordering or preordering of food, and some have either added mobile device payment options already or are considering it. The National Restaurant Association reported that around 10 percent of people pay for food with their smartphone at least once a week already. If the number of restaurants that offered smartphone payment options increases, it’s safe to assume that the number of people using them would also grow.

More tech devices in restaurants
Even if you don’t want to make reservations, order or pay for your meal from your smartphone, you’ll likely be having more interactions with technology at restaurants soon. Many eateries are putting in or testing new tablets that customers can use to order, sign up for rewards programs, and pay their bill. Primarily, this technology has begun to appear in chain restaurants like Ruby Tuesday, Applebee’s, Chili’s Bar and Grill and Olive Garden.

Why more technology?
According to the Eater, technology is popular in restaurants because it may reduce overhead costs and can more easily gather customer information that can lead to better sales. With modern technology, restaurants may be able to operate more efficiently and with fewer employees. This possibility will likely keep restaurant owners interested in testing and implementing new technology as it becomes available. Still, the Eater reports that there will be a large number of customers who are not so enthused by new restaurant technology. These people will likely still prefer to deal with regular host and wait staff.

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