Although there are still some transactions that require human interaction at financial institutions, automated teller machines have spread all over the world providing people with a convenient option for making many of their simpler transactions. The use of automation and robotics has continued to progress to include automated retail kiosks (like Redbox) and now even into the restaurant and bartending industry.
Robotic bartenders have already been introduced at many different establishments around Phoenix. The Sorso Wine Room at the Scottsdale Quarter was one of the first places to feature an automated wine dispenser that allows customers to choose from up to 32 wines from around the world.
Sorso’s co-owner Mark Teahen said that he first encountered an automated wine dispenser while on vacation in Italy alongside of his wife. “We didn’t have much experience with Italian wine, so we really enjoyed our experience of going through and tasting a bunch of different varietals,” he said. “So, ultimately, when we decided to go down the path of opening a wine bar, this was kind of the center of that.”
This is how customers order a drink from an automated bartending machine:
- Load money onto a card
- Slide the card into a credit-card sized slot on the wine dispenser
- Place a glass under a nozzle
- Press a button to dispense whatever type of wine they want
There are some people who fear that robots might replace human bartenders completely, and void the conversation that they seek from their bartenders. Even a recent report from consultancy firm PwC indicated that 38 percent of U.S. jobs will be at high risk for automation by 2030. But, technology still can’t accommodate many different requests including mixed drinks, so customers can still look forward to seeing real bartenders working alongside of automated dispensers for a while.