Soon that low-skilled college student making $15 per hour for simply turning a burger pattie over on the grill will be replaced by 'Flippy' the Robot. Who, as it turns out, will be 3 times efficient and cost a third less that his human counterpart. No longer will your burger be flipped by human hands with dirt under the fingernails, but by the gleaming stainless steel arm of "FLIPPY".
The next time you place an order at a fast food joint, you could see a robot behind the counter. Flippy is an AI-driven kitchen assistant that can flip burgers and place them on buns, and it debuted today at a CaliBurger restaurant in Pasadena, California. Flippy was developed by Miso Robotics and CaliBurger’s owner, Cali Group. It uses cameras, sensors and deep learning software to locate ingredients in a kitchen without needing to reconfigure existing equipment. Not only does it position and flip the patties, it tracks their temperature and cooking time too. When the burgers are done, it alerts a human cook, who applies the cheese and other toppings. “Much like self-driving vehicles, our system continuously learns from its experiences to improve over time,” said David Zito, CEO of Miso Robotics, in a statement. Eventually, Zito said Flippy can be trained to help with other kitchen tasks, like frying chicken, cutting vegetables or plating. Self-ordering kiosks are already replacing workers at fast food chains like McDonald’s and Wendys. But, Miso Robotics said Flippy is designed to work alongside human staff. Once its “probation” ends in Pasadena, it will roll out to more than 50 CaliBurger locations over the next two years. When that happens, some people could be reassigned to the dining room to engage more with customers, while others will be trained to operate their new assistant.