McDonalds makes fast food faster with mobile ordering

McDonald's is giving customers in Monterey and Salinas, California, and Spokane, Washington, the opportunity to first experience the new level of convenience of mobile ordering and pay within its app in a beta pilot created to elicit valuable feedback leading up to the national launch later this year. First, place your order on the app, check in to your closest McDonald's, and then the restaurant will track your geolocation and only prepare your food once you're close by so it doesn't sit under a lamp for too long.

McDonald's has started testing mobile order-and-pay after acknowledging the ordering process in its restaurants can be "stressful".

McDonald's says it wants feedback from the test before launching the app nationally.

The rollout comes as customers increasingly seek out convenience through options like online ordering or delivery. "We can't impact the speed or the quality of our food", says Jim Sappington, McDonald's executive vice president of operations, digital and technology. The chain has also said its mobile order-and-pay option was so popular that it caused congestion at pick-up counters past year, leading some customers who walked into stores to leave without buying anything. This helps save a lot of time for customers and even the staff. The local pilots are created to obtain customer feedback and prepare McDonald's for the national launch of mobile ordering and pay across its 14,000 US restaurants beginning in Q4.

They have the flexibility to decide whether they would like to pick up the food at the physical counter, curbside pickup or at the drive-thru. Starbucks said it is working on fixing those issues.

McDonald's has released an update to its app that brings support for mobile ordering in select markets.

One of the big differentiators for the new McDonald's app is that it will be location-aware.

  • Zachary Reyes