There’s tech everywhere—not simply in large billboards, complex machinery or cluttered email inboxes. Tech is now our grocery cart and our morning toast. For a moment, it’s on our plates. But how often is it in our thoughts?
The tech in our bowls may not reveal itself to us at first, but there’s an entire industry of intelligent engineering systems working on every step leading up to it. The food tech industry has, over the years, boomed into one of the most significant tech industries today.
Food creators and curators now compete to crack the code to stay atop the demand-supply chain, and the answer has already revolutionized almost every industry in the world: artificial intelligence (AI). AI is a computer technology that can precisely trace deep-laced, intricate patterns that may take intensive manual research for humans to discover.
AI In The Food Tech Industry
With its immense potential, AI has seeped deep into the food tech industry, including restaurants. Experts predict that the value of AI in the food and beverages market is expected to reach $29.94 billion by 2026 at a 45.77% CAGR.
This surging popularity of technology in taste comes as no surprise. Customization rules the roost today, as consumers no longer wish to stay confined to a simple printed menu, actively steering towards more informed and interesting meal choices.
AI can literally guide the customer’s hand and help them watch what they eat. For example, with the use of combined AI and IoT, a smart wristband can evaluate a user’s daily food choices by examining their genetic code and determining their susceptibility to nutrition-related health conditions.
The concept of avant-garde cooking, which experiments with styles, flavors and tastes, has been lifted off to a whole new level by AI/ML. Using immersive studies and predictions, ML-fueled technology has elevated the creativity of food connoisseurs by modeling consumer responses to new products and practices. The AI-powered culinary research assistants use such metrics to create fresh, innovative dishes that take even pro chefs to the task.
While ordering kiosks have become fairly common in a variety of restaurants, there are some eateries that are taking that experience a step further. For example, some companies are experimenting with kiosks with facial recognition technology that can recognize repeat visitors and tailor their experience based on their calorie intake, eating habits, past orders and preferences. There is a lot of data being analyzed and complex software algorithms being written to ensure great customer experience. Technology allows restaurants to provide their clients with tailor-made food and drink recommendations generated by their AI and ML platforms.
How to Test Food Tech Platforms
Restaurants, globally, are putting nutrition at the heart of their digital ordering experience. We can also expect to see more restaurants investing in technology that will allow customers to place orders directly through their website, mobile app and automated phone ordering via voice assistants. This will require software integrations at various levels and hence these companies will have to ensure that the software works bug-free.
Correctness, compliance and continual improvement could be the make or break of smart, IT-powered food technology solutions. If you are rolling out a food-tech software or are already using one, make sure the following tests have been performed on the software to ensure the best possible consumer experience.
Functional Testing: Ensure that the software works as intended across platforms, devices and operating systems. If your software is integrated into a kiosk, test the kiosk software thoroughly as well.
Security Testing: The app must be secure from outside and inside threats. Any code vulnerabilities exploited by hackers can result in loss of reputation, fines and huge business losses.
Performance Testing: The software must be tested for peak loads and response times. A minor drop in performance of your app or website can result in thousands of dollars of lost revenues.
Accessibility Testing: Accessibility testing is the practice of making your web and mobile apps usable to as many people as possible. Make sure that your apps and kiosk software integrations are thoroughly tested and accessible to people with disabilities, such as vision impairment, hearing disabilities and other physical or cognitive conditions.
AI Testing: With the use of AI in food tech, AI/ML algorithms, data and code must all be tested properly. AI systems require extensive performance and security testing. Since AI systems are designed to work with other systems and to solve specific problems, system integration testing is a key part of AI testing.
UI/UX Testing: It is important that your software is visually appealing (UI) with an easy-to-use interface (UX) that can stand out in the crowd and offers a seamless and impactful user experience. A poor UI and UX could severely impact the company’s reputation.
Compatibility Testing: Ensure your web or mobile application works on the various devices that your customers may use. Testing across various iOS and Android devices and across various operating systems is a must before you roll out our software to end users.
There is no doubt that tech is here to stay in the food business. While AI will continue to play its role in making our eating experience better, the software owners will have to ensure that the software is tested thoroughly. Your customers have already embraced digital and quality products in their personal lives. It’s time to make sure you can keep up with them.
Original post: https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2022/09/21/seasoned-with-a-dash-of-smarts-how-restaurants-can-join-the-ai-trend-revolutionizing-the-food-tech-industry/?sh=1fc158601cb1&s=09