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Meet Coffee Haus, a personalised coffee making robot

A robo-coffee barista is getting ready to serve coffee at San Francisco International Airport. Image credit: SFGATE

I have posted news of robots flipping hamburgers, of robo-waiters and now is time of robo-coffee.  At first having a robot to serve coffee may seem an overshoot: we already have coffee vending machines in many places accepting coins (and more recently smartphone enabled payments) that in some way are robotic machines. What is the need for a full fledged robo-coffee?

At San Francisco Airport coffee sales totals some 50M$ per year, an amount representing almost 20% of the whole business of food and beverage sales. Hence the interest to improve the coffee experience (and decreasing operating cost as well). In the coming months a few robotic arms will start preparing and serving coffee to travellers.

This is somewhat a curiosity. What make me writing this post is another news, the one of Coffee Haus by Briggo.

Briggo is a new company that is offering a “personalised connected coffee experience”, watch the clip.

They have created an app (of course!) to interact with Coffee Haus (their robotic coffee dispenser) letting the customer to specify in minute details the type of coffee experience they are looking for. You can enter details like the temperature of the milk and the one of the coffee (I have to say I wouldn’t know what data to enter, I guess you need to get a master degree in coffee making first).

Notably, Coffee Haus can prepare up to 100 coffee per hour, each one tailored to the specific request, a volume that would require 3 to 4 baristas. One robot can work around the clock, hence delivering the output of 10+ baristas.

What is intriguing is that the robot takes advantage of the latest software technologies, including cloud and, of course, artificial intelligence. All to deliver personalised customer experience.

I am not sure how much of this is just marketing. On the other hand saying that you are using AI to brew some coffee is also a clear indication of how much progress AI has made in terms of commoditisation and reaching the mass market.

About Roberto Saracco

Roberto Saracco fell in love with technology and its implications long time ago. His background is in math and computer science. Until April 2017 he led the EIT Digital Italian Node and then was head of the Industrial Doctoral School of EIT Digital up to September 2018. Previously, up to December 2011 he was the Director of the Telecom Italia Future Centre in Venice, looking at the interplay of technology evolution, economics and society. At the turn of the century he led a World Bank-Infodev project to stimulate entrepreneurship in Latin America. He is a senior member of IEEE where he leads the Industry Advisory Board within the Future Directions Committee and co-chairs the Digital Reality Initiative. He teaches a Master course on Technology Forecasting and Market impact at the University of Trento. He has published over 100 papers in journals and magazines and 14 books.