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McDonald's & Google Unveil AI Innovations: Modev Highlights from CES 2024

Unveiling the Future of AI in Retail and Restaurants

At this year's CES 2024 conference, industry leaders gathered under the Modev header to discuss the transformative role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the retail and restaurant sectors. The panel, expertly moderated by Andy Huels, Head of Global Growth & Strategy at RadiusAI, featured insights from Michelle Gansle, Chief Data & Analytics Officer at McDonald's, and Bashad Bashsh, Vice President of Engineering at Google.

In this post, we provide an overview of the main talking points discussed by the panelists, providing insights into how AI can enhance retail and restaurant experiences.

Let's start.

Andy Huels, Moderator: Driving the AI Conversation

Andy, who has extensive knowledge of retail and technical expertise, started off by discussing AI's "iPhone moment:" the point where AI became an integral, inseparable part of daily business operations and strategy, analogous to how smartphones have become ubiquitous in daily life. AI is essential in modern business. Brands should begin thinking about deploying AI and even work with established tech companies like Google to navigate the complex AI landscape.

Throughout the panel, Andy's approach encouraged each speaker to contribute their unique perspective and expertise, providing a comprehensive view of how AI is used in the retail and restaurant industries, with examples ranging from fraud prevention to predictive analytics and personalized customer experiences.

Let's look at what they had to say.

Michelle Gansle & McDonald's: A Taste of AI Innovation

McDonald's integrates AI across various facets of its operations.McDonald's isn't just a fast-food giant; it's also a tech innovator, leveraging AI to streamline and enhance its services.

One of the most critical applications is AI's role in fraud prevention. McDonald's deals with a staggering 50 million potential fraud incidents each month. By employing AI, the company can sift through these incidents with remarkable efficiency, identifying and preventing fraudulent activities at a scale that would be impossible for human teams to manage alone. She tells us that this protects the company's assets and ensures a secure transaction environment for customers.

Moving on to the customer front, he use of AI in the McDonald's app allows the restaurant chain to personalize the user experience, offering tailored promotions and recommendations that drive customer satisfaction and sales. By analyzing customer data, AI can provide customers with individualized promotions and recommendations, enhancing customer satisfaction and increasing sales. This level of personalization, she continues, is a key differentiator in the competitive fast-food landscape.

McDonald's is also deploying AI in drive-thrus to improve order accuracy and reduce wait times, allowing employees to focus on higher-value service tasks. And AI optimizes restaurant operations by predicting customer traffic and managing tasks like equipment maintenance. For example, AI can determine the best time for fryer oil changes, enhancing food quality while reducing waste and costs. These advancements demonstrate AI's capacity to make the fast-food industry more intelligent, efficient, and customer-centric.

And that's something every restaurant owner should find palatable.

Bashad Bashsh on Google's AI Blueprint for Business

AI has an impact on customer interactions, particularly in the realm of conversational AI. Google's technology enables businesses to create more personalized and engaging customer experiences on digital platforms. As an example, AI can be used to create more human-like interactions on websites and apps, which can lead to improved customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Voice ordering systems are also crucial. Google's AI is used to refine voice ordering in drive-thrus while aiming for near-perfect order accuracy. This advancement illustrates the potential of AI to revolutionize real-time customer service environments, reducing errors and enhancing the overall efficiency of the ordering process.

Before the panel came to a close, Bashsh presented Google's Cloud's Vertex platform. He explained how this platform can simplify the deployment of AI applications, making it possible for companies without deep expertise in machine learning to benefit from AI's capabilities. By offering such accessible solutions, Google is democratizing the advantages of AI, enabling a wide range of businesses to innovate and improve their services.

Wrapping Up

This CES 2024 panel illuminated AI's vast potential to revolutionize retail and restaurant experiences. From McDonald's operational enhancements to Google's push for accessible AI solutions, the future is ripe with opportunities for businesses ready to embrace the AI wave. As we move forward, these insights will undoubtedly shape the strategies of companies looking to stay ahead in a rapidly evolving digital world.

As Modev continues to illuminate these technological milestones, it plays a pivotal role in reporting these changes and shaping the conversation around them. By bringing together thought leaders, innovators, and the community, Modev fosters a dialogue that ensures technology develops in a way that benefits and enriches society. We will continue shining a light on the tech that's making a difference, reshaping how we interact with each other and the world to provide rich, immersive, and personalized experiences with better outcomes for all.

You can view the full panel discussion here.

Modev News, govai