We have robots delivering pizzas and carrying take-out orders down the city sidewalks. What's next, robot's serving us our coffee? Why, yes! That is what's next.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Cafe X of San Francisco has broken the ice for anyone who wanted to go the robot-barista route. The cafe is located in San Francisco's Metreon Mall, and customers can simply press buttons to choose their drink and bean and the robot will get to work.
The robot retrieves your cup, adds any necessary syrup, then let's the coffee machine do the rest. The best part is that your coffee drink is ready within 22 to 55 seconds. Less than a minute! The robot is self-sufficient, in that it cleans itself and adjusts recipes on its own for temperature and humidity.
Cafe X isn't even really a cafe. It's a kiosk outside of the mall, according to Wired. You order your coffee via iPad, and then you get to watch the robot behind the glass window move quickly and efficiently to deliver your morning joe. You can choose from three kinds of beans and the amount of syrup you'd like to have. The robot spins around, and begins making a few different drinks at once. It can complete each order in 20 seconds! That makes up for the time you spend waiting in long Starbucks lines on your way to work in the mornings. You really can't beat this level of efficiency.
This technology already existed in Hong Kong, and has been successful there for a while now, but this is the first Cafe X kiosk to hit the U.S. market. What really delayed the initial set-up was that the health department didn't know how to classify the kiosk. Is it a coffee vending machine, or a cafe? What does this mean for health codes?
Eventually, the health department decided that the kiosk would be classified as a food truck, as long as the owners installed a sink. Let's hope this fun new cafe makes its way to other states soon!