Ford and Domino's have announced road tests for a self-driving pizza delivery service in Michigan. A fleet of research vehicles will begin deliveries in September as the two firms explore how customers respond to and interact with self-driving cars. In the coming weeks, Domino's customers in Ann Arbor, Michigan, will be given the option to have a Ford Fusion Hybrid autonomous research vehicle deliver their pizza. Ford and Domino's have announced road tests for a self-driving pizza delivery service in Michigan. In the coming weeks, Domino's customers in Ann Arbor, Michigan will be given the option to have a Ford Fusion Hybrid autonomous research vehicle deliver their pizza.
If you're hungry for pizza and ordering from Domino's in Australia, you can now see what your pie will look like in augmented reality before placing your order. Available through the App Store and Google Play, the updated Domino's mobile app includes New Pizza Chef, an entertaining tool that lets customers build a virtual version of their pizza and their chosen toppings. "Innovations such as the New Pizza Chef with augmented reality are important as they help us to continue to drive online sales, and with up to two million items sold online in one week, we know it's important for us to always be making the online ordering experience more seamless, rewarding, and memorable for our customers," said Michael Gillespie, Domino's Group chief digital and technology officer in a statement. Once the virtual pizza is dressed, users can see it "baked" in front of them via flame effects. The AR experience also displays animated avocado and pineapple characters to up the fun factor (and disgust those who prefer more traditional toppings).
Domino's has delivered new additions to its Domino's Robotics Unit (DRU) family, announcing the DRU Platform, an artificial intelligence (AI)-based technology that will allow customers to order a pizza using their voice. As of Monday, customers will be able to use DRU Assist, an in-app AI virtual assistant that was built in partnership with natural language company Nuance. DRU Assist takes the pizza giant somewhat back to the start of its digital journey, with customers speaking to order a pizza via their phone. Powered by Nuance's Nina, Domino's DRU Assist engages with customers in human-like conversation via text or speech recognition. "DRU Assist is not just a toy, this is real platform change," Domino's Group CEO and Managing Director Don Meij said.
Domino's Pizza has been a company willing to embrace technological change over the past few years. In 2015, it announced that customers could order pizza just by texting a pizza emoji to Domino's. Last November, it delivered a pizza by drone to a couple in New Zealand, claiming that it will be faster and safer as a drone delivery would not have to worry about traffic. Now Domino's is taking another step towards the future as it announced the DRU platform, which ZDNet describes as "an artificial intelligence (AI)-based technology that will allow customers to order a pizza using their voice." Customers could use their phone, computers, or virtual assistants like Amazon Alexa to order pizza, find opening hours, and browse through a menu.
Domino's Pizza Enterprises will from Monday be tracking customers en route to in-store pickup, when it launches its On Time Cooking concept Australia-wide. Speaking in Sydney on Thursday, Domino's Group CEO and Managing Director Don Meij said the idea behind On Time Cooking was to ensure food is not sitting around in store getting cold before the customer is able to collect it. When placing their order, the customer will tell Domino's how they are getting to the store and their order will only commence when the customer has entered the "Cook Zone" -- a dynamically updated virtual zone around the store that represents the current store lead time. If the customer has told Domino's when ordering that they will be walking to the store, Domino's will receive a notification when the customer has entered the Cook Zone, with their smartphone or smartwatch device communicating via GPS location tracking to the store. According to Meij, the concept builds on the company's existing GPS Driver Tracker initiative, which Domino's launched early last year in partnership with Navman Wireless.