Mexican restaurant group Wahaca has rolled out a new augmented reality (AR) menu to showcase its dishes and create an interactive customer experience.
The chain has teamed up with 3D and AR specialist Poplar Studio to enable customers to interact with the menu – the first of its kind in the UK – by scanning a QR code which has been printed on more than 60,000 physical Wahaca menus with their smartphone.
The experience will project AR information on top of existing physical menus which will not only allow customers to navigate the menu but also access pictures of dishes, descriptions, and even additional information such as ingredients, allergens and sustainability practices.
Customers can now enjoy Mexican cuisine alongside an inspiring customer experience as the AR effect is accessible to all customers with a smartphone.
Wahaca’s co-founder Mark Selby said: “At Wahaca we have always sought to inspire our guests, both in the restaurant with our food and service and in the wider world. We’re very excited about collaborating with Poplar Studio as this AR experience brings our menu to life to visually inspire our customers about our food, ingredients and sustainability. ”
Thanks to a CMS acquired by Poplar during its recent acquisition of Svrf, Wahaca will itself be able to upload and manage the AR menu experience when they need changing over time.
AR experiences don’t usually come with a CMS element attached meaning the content is usually fixed, requiring additional AR development and cost for changes to be made.
The integration however, will enable Wahaca to update the name, description colours and photos from dishes without those additional costs.
Poplar Studio CEO, David Ripert, commented: “We’re delighted to be working with Wahaca – a pioneer in the food and drink industry – on bringing its menus to life. AR is the perfect technology for restaurants looking to enhance their customer experience in unique and exciting ways.
“We believe interactive menus are just the beginning. It’s great to see Wahaca taking the initiative to engage customers through the use of innovative technology.”
The AR experience will also be linked to a digital payment system to enable contact-free payments directly from the customer’s table, enhancing customer experience while keeping customers and staff safe.