Wearable context design idea: so a guy steps into a restaurant...

Technology should be serving humans as a way to experience more real life and less screens. This morning, I was driving my weekly 2 hour commute and listening to Episode 102 of The Web Ahead podcast with Jen Simmons: Understanding Apple Watch with Josh Clark. One of the take aways I had that was less deep than some other thoughts I need to sort out before I write about was sketchable. 

First, let me say that I only recently bought a fitbit as my first wearable experience. So far, I feel like it's a pretty invisible experience and I love the dashboard option although I feel like it's missing a lot of potentially helpful data correlation. I also wish it were waterproof because I find myself having to take it off a lot and then I forget it, but that's another story. I like how it only notifies me daily when I am within a threshold (which I've set manually) of my daily goal. But it has so much more potential to helping me optimize. I really like that it has barely a screen and it's meant to just wear and capture data. The data comes to me as long as I charge it and wear it.

This spurred an idea I had for an experience of when you walk into a restaurant. Rather than having to touch a kiosk screen for menu options to order like so many restaurants are throwing in our faces just to look "innovative", I thought it might be nice if it went something like this as a smart watch scenario:

  1. Enter restaurant
  2. Notification with confirmation screen on your location
  3. If confirmed, your watch/wearable:
    1. Asks if you want what you ordered last time (and rated as 4 stars).
    2. Brings up menu options based on your favorite foods and/or filter restaurant specials.
  4. Order with a touch/pay immediately. Similar experience when you leave to tip. Use your voice to leave them an optional message.
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All of this without pulling out your phone or needing to fully engaged in a menu kiosk. Opt in to dessert notifications or other selling opportunities from the table. The restaurant gets a very tailored, qualified audience for those opportunities, and no one gets that in their personal space who doesn't want it. Offer loyalty rewards in a nice experience and make it an overall invisible feel.

Of course, just like many services and technology out there it would depend solely on restaurant implementation and/or participation but it's just an idea to get us thinking about context and leveraging data. There are obviously many other scenarios such as adding another person's order to a check that could be addressed in detail, but overall this type of thinking and scenario could allow more time to chat - the real reason we went out to eat in the first place.