Go for the coffee. Stay for the robot.
Cafe X, a San Francisco-based startup, aims to upgrade the archaic cafe setup. Starting today, customers will be able to order freshly brewed coffee from a robotic arm barista. With locations in San Francisco and Hong Kong, Cafe X aims to solve time and quality compromises that customers face with their daily coffee routines.
The fully automated coffee shop integrates special hardware and software to mechanize the typical barista. Beverages can be ordered on the spot at the Cafe X kiosk, or customers can download the Cafe X mobile app and order from their smartphone. The enclosed cafe features multiple dispensers for brewing locally-sourced ingredients: AKA Coffee, Verve Coffee Roasters, and Peet’s Coffee. When ready, the six-axis Mitsubishi industrial robotic arm carefully moves the cup from dispenser to delivery slot. It’s almost like an arcade crane machine but with more coffee.
“In today’s world, you have two options for getting a cup of coffee: you’re either in and out with something subpar or you’re waiting in a 15-minute line for a great cappuccino. I started Cafe X to eliminate that inherent compromise and give people access to a tasty cup of coffee consistently and conveniently,” says Henry Hu, founder of Cafe X.
For any human baristas worried about robot replacements, don’t fret. Cafe X doesn’t intend for that. “This won’t replace baristas or the coffee shop experience that so many people have come to love – we don’t aim to do that,“ says Hu. “What we’re offering is the best possible experience for people who are looking for consistent specialty coffee to-go.”
As of today, customers can purchase the caffeinated beverages from Cafe X’s first shop in San Francisco. Prices start at $2.25 for a small cup but vary depending on customer’s coffee bean choice. Those with iOS and Android devices can already download the Cafe X app to order in advance.
Source: Cafe X