A restaurant in Sydney, Australia is said to be the first in Australia (and probably anywhere else) to replace printed menus with iPads.
Diners at Global Mundo Tapas in the Rydges Hotel in North Sydney can use iPads to order meals, and even to specify how they’d like their meat cooked or get advice on food pairings and which wines to drink. The custom app used by the restaurant shows pictures of the dishes on the menu and sends orders to the kitchen via WiFi.
The app can also keep track of stock levels and automatically remove items from the menu if they’re sold out.
I can see a lot of advantages to using the iPad in this way, but also some big downside issues. For starters (no pun intended), I wonder how many dropped iPads a place would get per day if they were really replacing all menus with iPads. And having iPads handled continually with greasy fingers and being used around glasses full of liquid that can kill them with just a routine spill is very scary. It would be hugely expensive to cope with even a few broken / ruined iPads per day due to spillages and drops.
Also, how many seats in the place? How would they even find enough iPads (and get past the 2 per person quota) to provide more than a handful of ‘MenuPads’?
It feels like a lovely bit of PR for the restaurant and the iPad, but I wonder how realistic the changeover is, and how long it will last.
What do you all think? If you owned a restaurant would you use iPads for menus?