Fast Food Chains Turn to Voice Bots in Drive-Thru Lanes

  • AI-powered voice bots are gaining steam among fast-food chains. 
  • White Castle is rolling out SoundHound’s bots to 100 drive-thru lanes by the end of 2024.
  • Here are 8 fast-food chains adding drive-thru voice bots amid labor challenges. 

White Castle is the latest fast-food chain replacing humans with voice bots in its drive-thru lanes.

White Castle said this week it was rolling out SoundHound’s AI-powered voice bots to 100 drive-thru lanes by the end of 2024. The fast-food burger chain, which has been experimenting with AI-powered drive-thru tech since 2020, joins seven other national chains using conversational bots to process drive-thru orders. 

Automation tools, from AI to robotics, are growing in popularity as the restaurant industry continues to be challenged by labor shortages and turnover. About 58% of restaurant operators say using tech and automation to alleviate labor shortages will become more common this year, according to the 2023 State of the Restaurant Industry Report by the National Restaurant Association.

Here are the eight chains adding automated voice tech in drive-thru stores.

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