More Than Just Beans For Your Buck

Guest Contributor, Leoš Smutný

When I buy a coffee from a drinks machine I get the feeling that it takes an eternity till I feel the cup of hot coffee in my hand. I shall spare you a description of how I feel when the vending machine accepts my money but leaves me empty handed or when instead of coffee I get a cup full of turbid swill. Although these are possibly specialties in the Czech Republic.


Nonetheless, I was delighted when the company Dallmayer Kaffee made 200 coffee machines available with a waterproof 19” digital display last spring – this is a nice example of digital street furniture and uses BroadSign software we believe, Ed. These electronic machines are linked with a control computer and communicate with a control room through a Wi-Fi Internet connection.

Watching the screen whilst waiting for your coffee makes the wait far more pleasant even if you are only watching adverts as some of them are quite funny. The machines can be found in locations which have been selected based on the number of drinks sold there. I myself have bought one of these digital coffees at a fuel station and one in a shopping center. Further machines can be found in certain hospitals, governmental authorities, office buildings and other frequented places.

Apart from the fact that the screens provide waiting customers with amusement, they also give the advertiser accurate information on the recipient of the advert which can be deduced from the number of drinks served. By installing these advertising screens the operator has gained control over the amount of coffee mixture, sugar and water in the machines.

It would also be a good idea to introduce “tailor-made adverts” based on the type of coffee bought and thus the target group or it would also be possible to install touch screens offering entrainment and maybe discount coupons, in addition to their commercial uses. They could also be connected to your mobile to be used even more effectively.

This is possibly the future in the Czech Republic and hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for it!

By the end of the year there will be 800 of these coffee machines in the Czech Republic entertaining you whilst you wait for your coffee.

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