Have you ever been to a McDonald’s for a McFlurry, soft serve cone or sundae and found out that their machine was broken? Well, there may be a simple reason for this, and it’s not because of the employees at that particular location. One previous theory said it was due to a tedious cleaning cycle that can last hours, or to be more specific, an 11-step process that includes using a sanitizer/warm water mix to clean seven removable parts. Read more for a video that explains in detail why these machines are always broken.
Yuto Kuroki, a mechanical engineer at Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan, and a team of researchers managed to modify a 3D printer head system to transform it into a 3-axis robotic manipulator. This gives the machine the ability to assemble various items, like toy cars and sandwiches, but unfortunately, there isn’t yet an extruder for condiments, so you’ll have to still add those manually. They first customized a low-cost fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer that can attach/detach printed end-effectors capable of changing the function of the 3D printer head (e.g. grab, break, and rotate printed objects). Read more for a video and additional information.
Domino’s announced today that it has partnered with Nuro, the leading self-driving delivery company, to launch an autonomous pizza delivery robot in Houston. Customers who place a prepaid order on the Domino’s website on certain days and times can select to have their pizza delivered by Nuro’s R2 robot, the first completely autonomous, passenger-less on-road delivery vehicle with a regulatory approval by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Read more for a video and additional information.
Piestro’s automated pizza vending machine has just gone contactless with PopID, a facial recognition payment company that offers consumers a faster, easier and safer way to pay. That’s right, simply open up the Piestro app to place pre-orders for pickup and then look at the camera to pay. The machines consist of advanced robotics, precise dispensing, and temperature sensors, including a complex temperature isolation system that keeps the toppings and dough at proper temperatures from the heat of the oven below. Read more for a video, additional pictures and information.
Remember Pizza Hut restaurants back in the 1980s, when there was still an arcade games section? If so, the fast food chain wants to bring back that nostalgic feeling with their new “Newstalgia” campaign. Order a large Tastemaker pizza to get a limited edition box, and then simply scan the QR code to play a unique augmented reality PAC-MAN game. You’ll also be able to enter a sweepstakes by following the on-screen prompts for your chance to win an actual PAC-MAN arcade cabinet. Read more to see the box in-action and for additional information.
Mars Wrigley teamed up with Wakefern Food Corp. to develop an autonomous “Mars Smiley Robot” to deliver products to shoppers at a ShopRite store in Monroe, New York. Not only does it follow customers around, but it plays music and dances while zooming around the store offering treats for sale. It uses self-driving technology to ensure safe operation, complete with sanitation wipes to safeguard shoppers. Read more for a video and additional information.
Microsoft may have delayed Halo Infinite, but that hasn’t stopped them from promoting the franchise, including their newest one with Pringles. The limited edition Pringles Wavy Moa Burger is available now exclusively at Walmart, and some fans have already rushed out to snag a tube. What is a “Moa Burger”? They are burgers made out of the flightless birds that call the Halo: Reach world home. and can also be found in wing as well as nugget forms. Read more for an early video review and additional information.
Developed by Pudu Robotics, the BellaBot is an innovative delivery robot that may soon be used at restaurants around the world, most recently at Sushi Island in Canada. Once activated, it can easily move, orient and navigate autonomously in highly dynamic, crowded environments. It comes equipped with intelligent induction trays that can be used to deliver food to 3-4 tables at a time. After arrive at the set table, the light strip beside the tray starts to flash, reminding patrons to pick up the food. Read more for two videos and additional information.
Photo credit: Chenchen Zhang
McDonalds Spam + Oreo Burger made a splash a couple of weeks ago when it was offered for just a single day in China. Now, the chain has begun selling a spicy chili oil sundae. Unfortunately (or fortunately), this is also a one-day item, available just on January 25th. However, residents living in Beijing city, Hebei or Liaoning provinces may need to travel outside of those regions to get their hands on one of these. Read more for a picture of the actual item.
Sure, ice cream machines are nothing new, and are quite handy, but sometimes, you just don’t have a couple of hours to spare. Meet the ColdSnap rapid freezing appliance that makes single servings of premium ice cream, frozen yogurt, frozen cocktails, smoothies, and frozen coffee from cylindrical pods in 2-minutes maximum. You read that right, the ice cream doesn’t need to be put in the freezer, thanks to its patented refrigeration technology to rapidly chill shelf-stable food / beverage formulations in single-serve recyclable pods. Read more for a video from CES 2021 and additional information.