I never expected this, but it could just work.
While I was in Singapore earlier in the summer, I met Ella, who introduced herself and conversed with me, but was in fact a ‘Mobile Robotic Barista’.
This robotic arm took my coffee order and duly dispensed it, ending with the equivalent of a flirtatious wink by twisting its hand/head to one side. Here’s the photo I took.
My first reaction was to doubt how a ‘machine’ could ‘personalise’ a premium service.
A conversation with Keith Tan, founder and CEO of Crown Coffee, quickly put me straight.
How do you ensure consistent quality in a 24 hour operation when there are staff shortages ? A robot guarantees this, increasing productivity and saving on cost. It could even anticipate your order as a regular customer by face recognition.
Then I smelled the coffee.