McDonald's and Taco Bell are among the major chains rolling out self-ordering kiosks, but the average price tag of $5,000 apiece could make small operators think twice, said Rob Meiner of digital display manufacturing company Peerless-AV. Still, the machines often pay for themselves quickly by driving higher sales and labor efficiencies, he said.
A startup called Galley is developing software to help restaurants modernize and manage back-of-the-house functions such as ordering ingredients and managing inventory. Google's former executive chef, Nate Keller, is an adviser to the San Diego-based company.
Upscale movie theater chain iPic Entertainment considers itself a restaurant and hospitality concept first, offering waiter service and gourmet menus at its 15 locations. "We have research that says 61% of adults would rather spend money on experiences such as a restaurant or a movie versus buying an item from a store. It's a potent combination," said the National Restaurant Association's Hudson Riehle.
Pinterest has extended access to its application programming interface for content marketing to third-party influencer platforms. The move is designed to facilitate brands' ability to work with influencers by providing more ways to gauge campaign effectiveness.
Both Google and Apple have consulted with the American Heart Association in relation to smartwatch development; as a result, their new devices will offer more insight for those using them for health reasons. Notably, the Apple Watch Series 4 has received FDA clearance relating to its ability to be used as an electrocardiogram and heart rhythm monitor.
Chinese smartphone-maker OnePlus has announced plans to expand into the smart TV market by offering consumers the ability to name the device through a crowdsourcing initiative. The company did not give a timeline for development of the device but did note that the final decision on the name will be made internally from submitted suggestions.
Nintendo Switch Online will not require users to subscribe to play popular game "Fortnite." The subscription service will launch Tuesday, and the company has released a FAQ detailing the titles that will not require subscriptions to play.
Nintendo has announced a list of games that will be available on Switch in 2019, including several "Final Fantasy" games, "Animal Crossing" and the newest offering in the "Luigi's Mansion" series. The company has also unveiled wireless controllers that will be available exclusively for Switch Online users.
The new Lumen app addresses what creator Andrey Andreev says is an underserved dating market -- single people over the age of 50. The perceived demand is a big part of what Andreev is counting on for success, as well as Lumen's focus on data verification and an abundance of images.
On Thursday, all US cellphones will receive a test "Presidential Alert" in a trial of the national Wireless Emergency Alerts system. The system has been used many times in local situations but has never been tested for a nationwide alert.