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Food, Beverage & Tobacco

McDonald's being sued in Illinois for collecting customer's biometric data at AI-powered drive-thru

Daily Mail - Science & tech

McDonald's is being sued for recording customers' biometric data at its new artificially intelligent-powered drive-thru windows without getting their consent. In court filings, Shannon Carpenter, a customer at a McDonald's in Lombard, Illinois, claims the system violates Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act, or BIPA, by not getting his approval before using voice-recognition technology to take his order. BIPA requires companies to inform customers their biometric information--including voiceprints, facial features, fingerprints and other unique physiological features--is being collected. Illinois is only one of a handful of states with biometric privacy laws, but they are considered the most stringent. A McDonald's customer in Chicago is suing the burger chain, claiming it records and stores users' voiceprints without their written consent, in violation of Illinois strict biometric privacy law In 2020, the fast-food chain began testing out using voice-recognition software in lieu of human servers at 10 locations in and around Chicago.

How artificial intelligence is revolutionizing the Food and Beverage industry


The possibilities are vast and the ability to inspire should not be undersold – this is a time to dream big. But in order to garner support for your AI ambitions, it is also necessary to demonstrate proof of concept. Here are some real-life examples of how AI can change the game for F&B manufacturers around the globe. AI systems deliver safer, more accurate production lines results with greater speed and more consistency than human workers. And on the factory floor, AI-based detection can be used to keep employees and equipment safer, identifying potential risks, such as a worker who has forgotten to wear the appropriate safety gear.

Europe's answer to Amazon Go


Helen, a stay-at-home mum living in the north of Lisbon, has just done a weekly grocery shop. But instead of paying for her items at the cash register, she's walked straight out of the store without going to a checkout. The 34-year-old is one of the early customers of Europe's first autonomous store, which uses computer vision and machine learning to enable customers to shop without queuing, paying with a cashier or even getting their wallet or phone out. "I'm glad this store opened in my neighbourhood," she told Sifted on a recent visit. "It's so much more convenient to shop when you have a baby stroller. The store, which is a partnership between technology provider Sensei and the physical retailer Continente, is an early example of what Sensei hopes will soon be used by retailers across the continent. It aims to be Europe's answer to Amazon Go, the checkoutless shop created by Amazon which launched in London this March after testing the water in the US over the past three years. Sensei's bet is that ultimately all shops will be compelled to adopt this technology in pursuit of improved customer experience. "There's no hassle, no friction in the experience: if you forgot to buy water, you just go in, buy your water, come out –– it's super fast!

How AI can enhance customer experience


Many companies seem eager to leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities, if for no other reason than to be able to let their employees, customers, and business partners know that they're on the leading edge of technology progress. At the same time, a lot of businesses are looking to enhance the experiences of customers and channel partners, in order to increase brand loyalty, boost sales, and gain market share--among other reasons. Some have found a way to combine these goals, using AI-powered tools to improve the way they deliver products, services, and support to their clients and business partners. G&J Pepsi-Cola Bottlers began its foray into AI and machine learning in January 2020, when it partnered with Microsoft to better understand the AI and machine learning components within Microsoft's Azure cloud platform. With guidance from Microsoft's data science team, "we spent time understanding the environment, required skill sets, and began ingesting various data components within Azure ML to provide predicted outcomes," says Brian Balzer, vice president of digital technology and business transformation at G&J Pepsi.

I Just Watched McDonald's New AI Drive-thru And I've Lost My Appetite - AI Summary


Sadly, I haven't been near Chicago lately and that's where the burger chain is testing this as yet imperfect system -- McDonald's confesses the robot only grasps your order 85% of the time. "Welcome to McDonald's," began exactly the same female robot voice you've heard every time you've tried to get through to a customer service operative at every internet provider/cellphone carrier/just about every business these days. The robot then asks if the customer wants anything else and invites the customer to "please full forward," because no mere human would know to do that. McDonald's is now being sued for allegedly recording voiceprint details of its customers at the robot drive-thru. The lawsuit claims that McDonald's makes the recordings "to be able to correctly interpret customer orders and identify repeat customers to provide a tailored experience."

I just watched McDonald's new AI drive-thru and I've lost my appetite


I wanted it to be clever. I wanted it to be surprising, enticing, well, at least a little bit human. After all, AI companies are always telling us how much better than the human equivalent their creations truly are. So when McDonald's revealed it was testing the idea of replacing humans at the drive-thru with robots, I was filled with cautious optimism. Would customers be greeted with a surprisingly chirpy voice, redolent of a young person who really enjoys high school?

Amazon Brings Cashier-Less Checkout Technology To Full-Size Grocery Store

International Business Times

Amazon is taking cashier-less shopping to a whole new level by bringing its Just Walk Out technology to a full-size grocery store for the first time. The world's largest online retail company officially announced on June 15 that it would launch a 25,000 square foot Amazon Fresh branch in Bellevue, Washington. The store, which will open on June 17, marks the company's 14th location in the U.S. Moreover, it will feature the Just Walk Out technology which combines computer vision, artificial intelligence, multiple sensors and cameras to keep track of the items that customers take from store shelves, reported The Verge. Amazon Fresh store customers in Bellevue will be given two checkout options upon entry.

Here's How AI Can Determine The Taste Of Coffee Beans


Coffee cups are pictured in the tasting area of the Vanibel cocoa and vanilla production facility, a ... [ ] former 18th Century sugar refinery in Vieux-Habitants, Guadeloupe, on April 9, 2018. Artificial intelligence (AI) is predicted to reach $126 billion by 2025. It is showing up in every industry, from healthcare and agriculture to education, finance and shipping. And now, AI has made a move to the food industry to discover and develop new flavors in food and drink. In 2018, Danish brewer, Carlsburg used AI to map and predict flavors from yeast and other ingredients in beer.

Amazon to open full-size grocery store that lets shoppers walk out without having to see cashier

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Amazon is set to open its first full-sized grocery store which will let shoppers walk out without having to pay a cashier. The 25,000-square-foot Amazon Fresh store, located in Bellevue, Washington, is set to open on June 17. It features an array of cameras and sensors that allows customers to skip the checkout line. The Just Walk Out technology uses computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning to track items placed in a cart or basket, and then tallies up the bill to be paid with the person's Amazon account or designated payment card. The Bellevue location will be the first full-sized store to offer the technology, while also allowing traditional payment methods.

Growing role for AI in fresh produce


There is a growing role for artificial intelligence within horticulture, experts have claimed – but it is not the silver bullet many people think. Speaking at World of Fresh Ideas, Anthony Atlas, head of product and growth at agronomic machine-learning specialist ClimateAI, outlined the benefits and pitfalls of AI use on farms. Describing AI as "systems that generate predictions from past correlations – a giant pattern-identification machine", Atlas said AI is only as good as the training it receives. He stressed that it is not easy to build, and that there isn't one single system that does everything, but instead each task is done by a separate model trained to perform a particular task. In horticulture, AI is being used as a decision-support system in climate and weather forecasting, imagery interpretation and precision automation of greenhouses. Benefits of AI include more complexity, nuance and power, the ability to cheaply automate repetitive tasks, and the fact it is more lightweight than a supercomputer.