mardi 4 janvier 2011

Smart business usage of tablets in restaurants

In a couple of weeks, the HUMANITY will celebrate the release of the first tablet computer: the iPad. Since that date I haven't really found that killer use case of the tablet that will drive me to buy it as a consumer. Till now, what I cant do on my PC, i can do on my smartphone and vice-versa.
Reading eBooks and magazines on the tablet is a very interesting concept, from an ergonomic point of view (many books in one place, easy navigation, interaction..) , from business point of view (better reachability, DRM, CRM..) and from an environmental point of view (less paper). But this concept has a dedicated and optimized tablet (kindle) that was commercialized years before by Amazon.
Nevertheless, I found a great potential for tablets in restaurant business. This summer, I read an article about an Italian restaurant in Lille (France) that started using the iPad for his menus. In fact, when the server comes to take your order, he hands you an iPad, from which you can directly order according to your choice:

The iPad suits perfectly to this job, because it has the same size of a traditional menu, and offers enormous possibilities of interaction, and thus enriching the client experience. For example, the client would like to know more about a certain plate, what is it made of, what it would look like, maybe recommendations of other clients..Servers should not feel threated, because the tablet will not substitute to them, it is complementary to their jobs.
Today I read about a big restaurant in Chicago that is using the iPad for its wine menu. Truth to be said, it is a wonderful application, that helps the client a lot in its buying decision. From a marketing point of view, the use of iPad in this context is very coherent with the luxury character of the consumed drink. The Chicago restaurant owners explain that introducing the iPad for ordering wine has increased by 20% their bottom-line:

Using tablets also can facilitates payment (by credit card number, paypal..), ordering process (the order is sent instantaneously to the servers screen)...
Bref, A really innovative idea for business!


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