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Q&A with mobile food ordering platform AirService

Q&A with mobile food ordering platform AirService

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AirService is a mobile ordering and payment platform designed for cafes, hotels and food trucks.

In January 2015, GPT launched a trial of its ‘Pronto’ food and beverage ordering App at Rouse Hill Town Centre, which was powered by the AirService platform.

The mobile ordering platform is designed to alleviate food court pressure by simplifying ordering and minimising wait times. Pronto also provides valuable insights into customer purchasing behaviour.

Pronto is now being rolled out across several of GPT’s retail and commercial assets. AirService is looking to be connected to more than 2000 venues in Australia within the next year and recently expanded its footprint into Japan and the UK.

The co-founder and chief executive of AirService Dominic Bressan answers some questions on his partnership with GPT and where he thinks his technology is headed.

Q: Why did you partner with someone like GPT?

Dominic Bressan: GPT is an ideal partner for us. They are progressive and innovative, with a clear use-case for AirService’s technology. Some of the companies we deal with try to shoe-horn our technology into situations it isn’t designed for, whereas while GPT does push the technology, it’s in the direction it’s designed to go in. They also have a fantastic range of food and beverage tenants, with the broad spread of service requirements that AirService is designed for: From takeaway to direct to desk delivery to catering to home delivery.

Q: Do you see much scope for mobile ordering platforms to develop much further?

DB: There’s a huge scope for mobile ordering platforms to develop further. At its core, mobile ordering (m-commerce) is really just e-commerce shrunk down and redesigned for a smaller screen. And for a lot of people, that’s where the understanding ends and that’s a large part of why there are so many poor mobile ordering experiences out there. There’s so much more mobile ordering can do though. M-commerce runs on devices that are usually with us 24/7. That alone opens up unique opportunities around hyperlocal, behaviour-based technology, where your next orders can be anticipated and ready to go for you (in a non-creepy manner).

Q: How do you see your product developing further?

DB: Along the lines from the question above, plus we love integrating with other clever products and platforms and we intend to continue making that a focus. For example, we integrate with InLink and their tenant management portal so that customers will be able to order using Pronto from their desktop computers within the management portal. AirService also integrates with a great company called Sherpa, which allows us to offer a top of the line delivery service to any venue using AirService, at no cost to the venue.

Q: How do you think the retail environment might change over the next decade?

DB: Over the next five years, I think the retail environment will change significantly. I think we’ll see physical shops transitioning to become spaces where customers sample products (try them on, touch them and taste them, depending on the product), while the actual purchase of the items will happen online. If the purchase happens in-store, the goods will be shipped to the customer same-day rather than being carried home. Over the next 10 years, I think the retail environment could be almost unrecognisable. There are several technologies, such as 3D printing and virtual reality, that are in their early commercialisation stages and that have the potential to revolutionise the retail environment.

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