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Digitalizing Restaurant Menus with Augmented Reality QR Codes


AR Code Tech | 03/12/2023 |


Augmented Reality is a rapidly advancing technology that allows users to interact with three-dimensional content in real time within their environment.

Renowned for its application in Pokémon Go, Augmented Reality (AR) has found its way into industrial settings as well, being used to overlay work instructions on surfaces for assembly processes and to display a variety of products or artworks, including culinary creations. This innovation has ushered in a new trend for the AR display of 3D models of dishes.

AR QR Codes: Revolutionizing the Restaurant Industry

An AR Code is a specific type of QR Code designed to house the crucial information needed to display a 3D Augmented Reality experience on devices like smartphones or AR glasses, such as the Apple Vision Pro Headset, bypassing the need for any specialized application.

AR Code Menu Burger

Scanning an AR QR Code, an abbreviation for Augmented Reality Quick Response Code, allows users to seamlessly integrate interactive 3D content into their immediate environment.

This versatile technology can be imprinted on a wide range of materials and has seen groundbreaking application in the gastronomy sector, revolutionizing dining experiences by embedding these codes directly onto restaurant menus.

Augmented Reality Menus with the AR Code Object Capture App

The AR Code Object Capture app revolutionizes restaurant menus by allowing eateries to create 3D models of their dishes, which are then linked to AR QR Codes. Customers can scan these codes to view the dishes in augmented reality, offering a realistic and interactive preview of their meal.

Demo Sushi Object Capture

This enhances the dining experience by providing a vivid representation of menu items, aiding in decision-making. For restaurants, it's a simple yet innovative way to showcase their cuisine and attract customers with a modern, engaging menu presentation.

Here is the demo showcasing the 3D scan of Takoyaki and the creation of its AR Code:

Takoyaki object capture

Check out the demo for a 3D scan of a burger and its AR Code generation:

Burger Object Capture

3D Dishes Generated with traditional Photogrammetry

Augmented reality can revolutionize the dining experience in restaurants by providing customers with an immersive and engaging way to explore menu items. For example, AR can be used to display 3D representations of dishes, allowing customers to visualize the dishes before placing an order.

There are several methods to create a 3D model of a dish. The method previously described showcases the capabilities of the AR Code Object Capture app, which is currently exclusive to iPhone Pro and iPad Pro devices. For other types of devices, we recommend the traditional photogrammetry approach, which only requires a MacBook.

Japanese restaurant menu photogrammetry

This technique involves taking multiple photos of a real-world object, in this case, a dish, from various angles, and then using software to create a detailed 3D model. The result? Unprecedented realism that can make your mouth water before the food even arrives.

Restaurant menu photogrammetry of a coffee

AR's appeal for restaurants lies in its ability to visualize food options in a real-life setting, creating a mouthwatering appeal that can encourage guests to try new dishes. An AR menu provides textual, design, and other cues to help diners explore more of a restaurant's offerings. It even allows guests to visualize the scale of food items, enhancing understanding of size and quantity. Thus, AR not only beautifies but also simplifies the dining experience.

These implementations are just the beginning and are expected to grow as AR technology becomes more integrated into our daily lives.

How AR QR Codes are Shaping the Restaurant Industry

As more chains begin to incorporate AR menus and receive positive feedback, others will see the lack of such technologies as a competitive disadvantage.

AR menus can generate publicity and attract Gen Z diners who typically do not dine out as frequently as older generations. These factors will likely drive the adoption of AR at a faster pace, making AR menus less of a novelty and more of a standard offering in restaurants worldwide.

Pizza hut 3D scan object capture

- Personalized dining experiences:

AR technology also has the potential to offer personalized dining experiences. By using AR QR codes, restaurants can cater to individual preferences, dietary restrictions, and allergens. As a result, customers can access customized information about the ingredients and nutritional content of the dishes they're considering.

- AR QR Codes in Marketing and Loyalty Programs:

Restaurants can use AR QR codes to boost customer engagement and loyalty. For instance, AR codes can be incorporated into promotional campaigns or loyalty programs, offering customers access to exclusive AR content, discounts, or rewards. This approach can help increase customer retention and encourage repeat visits.

- Utilizing AR QR Codes for Restaurant Staff:

AR QR codes can also be an effective tool for staff training and development. By scanning an AR code, staff members can access interactive 3D models of dishes, drinks, or equipment, helping them learn how to assemble and present menu items. This technology can also be used to demonstrate proper cleaning and maintenance procedures for restaurant equipment.

- AR QR Codes and Contactless Dining:

In a post-pandemic world, contactless dining has become increasingly important. AR QR codes can help restaurants adapt by offering contactless menu browsing and ordering. Customers can simply scan the AR code to view the menu and place their order, minimizing contact with physical menus and other touchpoints.

Embracing the Future of Dining with AR QR Codes

Augmented Reality QR codes have the potential to revolutionize the restaurant industry, offering a myriad of benefits to both customers and businesses. From enhancing dining experiences with mouthwatering 3D visuals to streamlining operations and boosting customer engagement, AR technology promises to reshape how we experience dining.

By embracing this technology, restaurants can stay ahead of the curve, attract a new generation of diners, and create unforgettable dining experiences.

Frequently asked questions

How is AR QR Code Technology Transforming the Restaurant Industry?

AR QR Code technology is revolutionizing the restaurant industry by allowing diners to visualize menu items in 3D before ordering. By scanning these codes with a smartphone, users can see a photorealistic representation of their chosen dish, understand its size and quantity, and even explore its ingredients. This interactive experience encourages diners to try new dishes, thereby enhancing the overall dining experience.

What Benefits Can AR QR Codes Bring to Restaurants?

AR QR codes offer numerous benefits for restaurants. They enhance the dining experience, attract a younger demographic of diners, and provide a competitive edge in a market increasingly driven by technology. Beyond the customer-facing advantages, AR QR codes can also serve as an effective tool for staff training, demonstrating the assembly and presentation of dishes or maintenance of equipment through interactive 3D models.

How Can AR QR Codes Contribute to Contactless Dining?

In a world increasingly leaning towards contactless services, AR QR codes can facilitate contactless dining by allowing customers to browse menus and place orders with minimal physical contact. By scanning the AR QR code, customers can view detailed 3D representations of menu items, make their selections, and place orders directly from their smartphones. This minimizes contact with physical menus and other touchpoints, enhancing safety and convenience.

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