Is that to stay or go?

July 10, 2007 by Dave Haynes

A Toronto company has put together prototypes for a very different spin on digital signage for the fast food industry. 

Forget menu boards and seating area plasmas. Mediox wants to embed a small LCD screen in each tray, according to its press release.

 “The market for multimedia advertising in fast food outlets is expected to reach $10 billion by 2012 and our goal is to provide restaurant chains with hardware and flexible content management system to generate additional revenue”, said Roman Kyrychinskiy, co-founder of Mediox. “Initially we are planning to launch this concept by offering fast food restaurant chains several rate plans including providing trays free of charge in exchange for a share in advertising and retail revenues”, he added.

The current version of the interactive multimedia fast food tray prototype featured at in “Restaurant Media” article, will be used for software development purposes and is currently being redesigned to facilitate for harsh usage conditions, intuitive interface and easy to use and durable control mechanism. The multimedia tray will allow visitors at fast food restaurants to watch live music broadcasts, movie previews, play games, check out nutritional information and much more. Soon fast food customers will be able to experience enjoy interactive entertainment right on their fast food trays.

“We are currently in a process of selecting a launch partner, an innovative restaurant chain willing to invest into our new technology, which offers exceptional ROI and takes customer experience to the next level. We’ve got a prototype, design concept, patents pending, manufacturing capacity and are ready to start working with a large fast food restaurant network,” said Alexander Zhavoronkov, company’s co-founder.

The number of hurdles these guys face — cost, reliability, durability, and on and on — is very high. I can also imagine a lot of these things leaving a fast food place with the teenaged customers, just as a laugh. I suspect we all had high school and college friends who would make it their personal mission to break something … just because.

Given these trays are going to be taken to tables, would it not make more sense to embed screens in those tables??? Pretty much the same business model, and easier to execute. Only snag is getting power to all the tables.

Anyway, not my challenge. Best wishes and I’m eager to see where this goes.

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