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‘And people thought these fast-food chains would just put up with employees asking for more money’: Customers asked to ‘please speak clearly’ to robot attendant in Checkers drive-thru

'Naw I got trust issues, I need her to repeat my order before giving me a total.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on Nov 17, 2022

Companies like McDonald’s and Panera Bread are already utilizing AI-powered voice processors to power their drive-thrus at select locations. Now, Checkers has joined this group, sparking mixed reactions from customers.

In a video with over 786,000 views, TikTok user @therealdefmike shows one of these drive-thru robots in action. The drive-thru robot is accompanied by a sign telling customers to “please speak clearly.”

@therealdefmike #newworldorder ♬ original sound – defmike

Checkers has previously claimed that it would roll out “AI-powered voice tech to 267 restaurants by the end of 2022,” per the Spoon.

In the comments section, some users supported the move toward robot-operated drive-thrus.

“This is actually kinda nice,” offered a commenter. “Most of the time the person who’s taking the order is doing some multitasking and this would make it a little easier.”

“Honestly if it lets [human workers concentrate] on cooking and getting orders right I’m down,” another added.

Some said they have already found success using the robot.

“My mom was shocked that her order was right (she requested a lot of substitutions),” claimed a commenter. For their part, Checkers says that its drive-thru robots have 98% accuracy.

However, others were less enthusiastic about the switch to robot service workers.

“Naw I got trust issues, I need her to repeat my order before giving me a total,” said a user.

“I would just come up to it and says employee every time,” alleged a second. “Wouldn’t even try to use the robot.”

“Ridiculous. they need to make laws forcing employers to actually employ people AND pay them a liveable wage,” stated a further TikToker.

The worry that the quickly decreasing price of tech would lead to unemployment was prevalent throughout the comments section.

“It’s inevitable. humans will continue to need to be paid more, and tech will continue to get cheaper,” explained a commenter.

“The transformation to automation has been in the works for the last 70 years…” echoed another in response to a comment about demands for higher wages. “They would’ve done this ether way.”

The Daily Dor reached out to Checkers via email and @therealdefmike via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Nov 17, 2022, 6:50 am CST