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There is nothing better than finishing a long day at work and heading to a bar for a nice big glass of wine. The problem is choosing the bar, choosing where to sit and then figuring out what type of drink you actually want to have. Trying something different and having a new experience is always exciting but it comes with a risk... what if I don’t enjoy it and waste my money? This all leads to a worse experience.
Having added information on flavour, temperature and also how the beverage looks often helps to reduce that risk. But there are now so many new options available in the beverage market and the choice can be overwhelming. Pubs and bars have to adapt to keep people engaged and allow for this growing need for a new experience.
Walking around drinktec last week I saw a few dispense system companies who are starting to look at IoT-based solutions. Augmented reality is becoming increasingly popular to improving consumer experience and guiding a consumer in the decision making process. As Rob has mentioned in his IoT blog, we went to the Celli stand and they had an AR (augmented reality) phone system for choosing your drink. I wrote down the user experience I had when using this demo and associated pains I found with each step:
My review of it is that it’s a nice idea. I found it quite fun to use and I enjoyed getting information for each beverage which I wouldn’t usually see, which helped to inform me and I didn’t mind rating my experience at the end (although didn’t see any personal benefits of doing so). The main reason I went all the way through this experience is that I had the time to kill, and was willing to work out what I needed to do at each point. If, however, I was in a busy bar on a Friday night and just desperate for a drink, I don’t think I would have done. An application like this should be implemented in a way that keeps consumers engaged and wanting to use the service again, and I don’t think this is quite there yet.
Are we there yet?
If I were to implement a service like this I feel a few of these pain points would need to be addressed to be commercially successful. A service which benefits the consumer needs to be quick, intuitive and beneficial and have very few pain points to make it a success. Careful consideration with the IoT service design needs to be made looking at types of consumers who would use the service and what would make them want to use it every time they went into a bar. Otherwise the service is just one of those gimmicks people use once and then never try again.