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KFC与百度拟联合推出"智能饭店":刷脸点单&支付

近日有消息指出,百度与肯德基中国公司正携手开发一款全新的"智能饭店"服务。也就是说,相关设备可以根据消费者的面部特征、预测年龄和性别、甚至是潜在情绪状态做出相应的点餐建议。

比如说,一个20多岁的年轻小伙子得到的建议可能会是"一个香辣鸡腿堡,一份炙烤鸡翅和一杯可乐",而一位50岁左右的女士获得的建议可能是"一份热粥外加一杯豆浆"。

如果这项服务真能实现,那么未来"熟客点餐"也很有可能成为现实--也就是说,在消费者来到店内之后就迅速识别出其是否为店内常客,并根据消费者日常点餐习惯进行下单。

而如果消费者愿意将移动支付和这种生物识别结合起来,也就是说在系统识别出消费者之后就能同时完成点餐和支付,那么整个过程就会变得更有意思。

不过,到底消费者对于这种情绪识别和实时支付的服务有多大的接受度?肯德基与百度推出的这项服务是否真的能找到真正的市场热点?谁也不知道答案。但是不管怎么说,这的确是一项令人眼前一亮的尝试。

It’s a bizarre equation to say the least: start with “Baidu” and add “KFC China”—yes, Kentucky Fried Chicken—and what do you get? If your answer was “easy access heartburn,” you’re even more cynical than I am. If your answer was “biometrics,” go buy a lottery ticket right now, because today is your day for long guesses turned right.

Seriously, that’s what’s going on. Baidu and KFC China are working together on “smart restaurant” elements that can recognize a shopper based on facial characteristics, projected age and gender and make menu suggestions from there. It can even make projections based on perceived mood.

For instance, a twentysomething male might get a recommendation for “a crispy chicken hamburger, roasted chicken wings and a Coke,” while a fifty-ish female might instead get “porridge and soybean milk.”

Where this really shines is that, eventually, the system may be able to recognize a customer and know his or her “usual”, setting up the order right when the customer is perceived to approach.

About the only way this could get more interesting is if customers had the option to connect a mobile payment option to the biometric recognition, and customers could just charge the order right from whatever interface was connected to the system. That would make ordering food incredibly fast and smooth; customers place an order based on history, tap a button to use a previously-registered payment system—which could be done away from the restaurant at home or the like—and walk out with the dinner in question.

Yet, I’m skeptical. Recommendations based on mood and the like are all fine and well, but how much of the user base is going to find this too intrusive to be reasonable, and how many would actually use this service over a mobile payment and ordering system? Are KFC and Baidu solving the wrong problem here? And are they letting themselves in for more problem than solution?

The idea is a noteworthy and exciting one, but given the other options already available in the field, we may not have a great idea here so much as an idea that would have been great before we discovered mobile payment and ordering.


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