A robotic arm swings into action, grinds the coffee, pumps the espresso shot and then places the finished product on the counter. No, it’s not the future, but the present at Ratio in downtown Shanghai.
As says the article “To get their caffeine fix, people perform a ritual that has become increasingly common across China: whip out their phones, scan a code at the entrance, place an order, and then pay via their mobile.” Streamlining the coffee experience is what Ratio is all about, especially for those those in a hurry on their coffee break. Gavin Pathross, the founder of Ratio, has impeccable qualifications for this venture. He spent “three years leading the digital transformation at Yum China, an offshoot of US fast-food company Yum that operates KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and many other brands.” Not only is this robotic solution convenient for customers but it addresses another problem, China’s 17.8 % employee turnover in the fast food segment.
Automation will only continue to gain momentum as robotics and AI simplify the replacement of repetitive human tasks. It begs the question though of where those workers looking for entry level jobs will find them? Technology is progressing so fast that the likelihood of suitable alternatives is ever diminishing. So where will these people go? Your guess is unfortunately as good as mine!