At table, no more wait and speedy refills!
*I was not compensated in any way for this post by any vendor; it is an unsolicited review of the product.
Recently while on a road trip through New England, I got to experience the Ziosk. It was a long drive through the rainy, misty mountains of Pennsylvania, all I wanted to do when I got to my hotel in Danbury, Connecticut was have a cold beer and something warm to eat. The local Chili’s seemed as good a choice as any since it was a short walk from my hotel which meant I could truly enjoy that beer, and some southwestern wraps!
I opted to sit in the bar since I was solo, and noticed this little tabletop kiosk on every table. Intrigued, I reached out and put my index finger to the touchscreen and started to explore what I would find out is called the “Ziosk”. It seemed that my touch prompted the server to emerge from the kitchen and ask if I would like to order a drink. I asked her why I didn’t just order from the tablet, and she explained that the first order had to be put through by the waitstaff, then after that I could order refills and pay my bill on the “Ziosk”.
I noticed there were games and trivia I could opt to pay to play, but there were also nice full color photos of the menu items. The Ziosk has a 7″ Android touchscreen, is WiFi enabled and boasts 22 hours of battery life. It was not affixed to the table which I thought strange, and wondered if that would really be a problem. I guess someone could walk out with one, but really, what were you going to do with it once you got it home?
The feature that I like the most about Ziosk is the Pay at Table feature (see image gallery below, courtesy of Ziosk.com). No more having to give your card to a stranger and watch it disappear behind the bar or into the kitchen. You can opt to have you receipt printed right there or emailed to you, and there’s even a tip calculator that would definitely come in handy if you’d had too many drinks or just failed to grasp simple math.
Will Ziosk replace Servers?
The short answer is no, maybe only the bad ones. Good servers, like the one I met at Chili’s that evening, will figure out how to make Ziosk a tool that will create the best customer experience and keep customers happy and returning, as well as expediting checkout leading to faster turnover of tables. Seems like a win-win-win for the customer, the server, and the restaurant!
The only suggestion I have is that screen wipes be made available at each table. It is flu season after all, and although I wash my hands frequently, the greasy fingerprints on the screen were a bit disconcerting to a germ-a-phobe like myself. There’s no way, on a busy night a server can wipe down each screen often enough for my comfort level! I did just so happen to have some lens cleaners in my bag (every good Optician does!) and used one of those to wipe away the smudges…then I was free to explore the features of this handy little kiosk! Check it out at Ziosk.com