The tech and culture hub of Austin takes their coffee pretty seriously... but will they trust a robot to make lattes and cappuccinos? Startup Briggo thinks so. Its robotic espresso baristas are currently being tested at the University of Texas and, soon, Austin's Bergstrom airport.
Customers order drinks through a smartphone app tied to their credit cards or through a touchscreen on the machine. Coffees are fully customizable and dispensed to-go. Unlike conventional coffee vending machines, the Briggo box makes real espresso and features a full line of flavored syrups. The vending machines, called Briggo Coffee Hauses, were designed in conjunction with designer Yves Behar and his Fuseproject group.
"We believe the overall coffee experience must include convenience and predictability. Our Coffee Haus creates artisan coffee drinks 24/7 with a level of accuracy never before seen in the coffee world, and the automated ordering system via the Briggo mobile website streamlines the process. Our customers easily, quickly get their favorite coffee the exact same way, every single time, without any hassle or wait," said Briggo CEO Kevin Nater.
Because this is 2013 and everyone loves a gimmick, there's also a social media component to the coffee. Once the company's iPhone and Android apps are live, customers can auto-tweet every time they buy a coffee and purchases are fully integrated with Facebook and Twitter. Briggo's first example of the new vending machines went live today at the University of Texas-Austin's Flawn Academic Center.
[Images: Casey Dunn/Briggo]