It's 2017 and finally ordering "fries with that" at McDonald's is an even easier prospect for all you lovers out there ball and chained to the fast food game. The great big golden arches are moving one step closer to making your order as golden as it ought to be through a mobile ordering app using geofencing technology to track your location.
With this, your food is only prepared when you are near the restaurant, and never sits out getting cold and congealed.
McDonald's initiated beta testing of their mobile ordering app on Wednesday at 29 restaurants in Monterey and Salinas, California. The test will soon expand to 51 more restaurants in Spokane, Washington on March 20.
Too slow? Can't wait? Well, if all goes well with the app's trial run, McDonald's plans to have their mobile ordering service available at 14,000 restaurants in the US by the fourth quarter of this year (let's say November), so don't fret.
Soon enough you can place your order through the app, pop on over to your local McDonald's, and through a nifty little thing called geofencing, which detects when you're phone enters a given area using GPS, your order will be as sizzling as a summer in a New York City subway.
Most mobile apps confirm your order and make it right away, but McDonald's takes a different approach, and tracks your phone's location to recognize the perfect time to start preparing your food.
Other chains such as Starbucks, Taco Bell, and Domino's have long ago jumped to mobile, and the results are profit worthy. Mobile ordering and pay is said to represent 7% of Starbucks transactions in the US, and 27% of all its mobile payment transactions.
"We look forward to learning from our customers in these markets as they order ahead, pay within the app and choose one of the various ways to pick up and enjoy their favorite McDonald's foods," Julia Vander Ploeg, McDonald's vice president of US Digital, said in a press release. "From the app to our restaurant operations, we've taken a fully integrated approach to ensure a seamless customer experience that we think our customers will love."
All in all, mobile ordering has an advantage. The typical ordering process at McDonald's for 2–3 items takes 17 seconds on average at the drive-thru. People ordering between 8–10 items can take 50–100 seconds. With mobile ordering, those averages go back down to about 10–15 seconds.
Food companies aren't the only apps that track your location. For example, the Sephora app uses push notifications to alert users of nearby stores.
Are we lovin' it? Or too creeped out by the idea of McDonald's knowing where you are at all times? Comment below!