Drinks News Technology

Boba Tea Startup Bobacino Looks To Incorporate Facial Recognition Payment System

Image courtesy of Bobacino and PopID

The global pandemic has forced many businesses and restaurants to switch up their traditional models, with many pivoting to accommodate contactless ordering systems and also less face-to-face contact in service. Bobacino, a boba tea startup that is a standalone, fully integrated system and and dispenser, looks to be a part of that trend by partnering with PopID, a facial recognition payment company.

This partnership looks to allow customers the ability to pay with their face at Bobacino’s automated locations and on mobile devices.

PopID’s advanced facial recognition technology works hand in hand with Bobacino’s low-touch automation, speed and accessibility. Notable benefits of this partnership are:

  • On-site contactless ordering and payment: PopID-compatible Bobacino machines will feature full software and hardware integration, allowing customers to select and utilize PopID’s PopPay solution as a payment method on the same screen they viewed Bobacino’s menu and placed their order. Customers can still pay via traditional credit/debit cards if they do not have a PopID account.
  • App ordering and payment: Bobacino customers will be able to use PopID as a payment method on PopID’s app for placing pre-orders for pickup.
  • Customer confirmation: Customers will also have the option of verifying their identity with PopID to retrieve their order. Through an opt-in only system, the customer’s face will be scanned and authenticated to dispense the drink. No customer data will be saved on Bobacino machines.

The demand for low-touch concepts and similar solutions that align with the fluid restaurant trends caused by the pandemic has led to much interest in Bobacino’s business model.

Just the fact alone that I can get a quick boba fix with the ease of just showing my face is enough to get me excited for this new technological breakthrough.

Design News Technology TikTok

The New Mustard App Is The Spotify For Food Lovers

Mustard is a new food discovery app that is a mixture of an ordering platform and a social media network. It was created as a hub for food lovers to easily find and purchase the many mouthwatering dishes that flood our social feeds. Without having to visit a website and download an annoying .pdf menu, the Mustard platform allows you to designate a dish, see it’s listed price and place an order right on the spot. 

With its recent debut on iOS in Los Angeles, the app already has over 8,000 restaurants listed in its database. Local food spots that offer takeout, delivery or reservations are automatically available to users. 

With Mustard, the goal was to create a personalized experience that combats “choice overload.” If you’re a food lover, there’s no doubt the algorithm saturates your timeline with a never ending stream of delicious content. This platform offers a history of user choices and curated filters by taking your views, purchases, mood and budget into consideration. With that information, it’s able to generate relevant food recommendations. Mustard CEO and award-winning film producer, Diana Might, shares the platforms vision:

“The way we currently search for and order food – through clunky filters, text-based lists, and homogenized menus – is dated. Now more than ever, people are using Instagram and TikTok as resources for discovering the best food their city has to offer, but none of that content is actionable. Mustard merges our love of finding and drooling over delicious food via social media, and the functionality to actually order (or book a table to eat) that food. It’s an all-around win for food lovers, creators and restaurants. We like to think of it as the Spotify for food. Our goal is to know your taste better than your best friend.”

Mustard’s integration with TikTok highlights and engages the popularity of food discovery among today’s social community. It offers users and influencers the ability to upload their own food related content. With original content, you’re given the opportunity to monetize your creations through revenue share agreements with Mustard’s delivery partners (Caviar, Doordash & GrubHub). Another cool benefit of original content creation is that for every conversion to an order, you can earn rewards in the form of affiliate fees at no extra cost to the restaurant. 

If you’re a food content creator who already has a following, this can help to expand that fanbase. And for natural food pornographers, this could be a great way to share your local restaurant experiences with others. 

Looking to have your foodie dreams realized? You can download Mustard in iOS via the Apple Store. For more information on this innovative approach to hassle-free food discovery, visit

Culture Technology

Beats by Dre and Ghetto Gastro’s First Collaboration Debuts Sleek Limited Edition Headphones

Beats by Dre and Ghetto Gastro, a Bronx-based collective that uses food as a way to spark larger conversations around inclusion, race and economic empowerment, just announced an exclusive collaboration that will debut a limited-edition Studio3 Wireless set of headphones.

The result is a sleek black-and-bone colorway, with a bold black-on-black Ghetto Gastro logo on the headband. It will also come with a carrying case donning the Ghetto Gastro fist logo, as well as 2 sticker decals, and a poster that portrays community resistance against oppression.

This partnership looks to amplify resistance by shining a light on New York organizations that champion activism, resource sharing, and education.

To help magnify this launch, Beats and Ghetto Gastro will be donating to two non-profits aligned with their mission: Sweet Freedom Farm and Herban Cura. Sweet Freedom Farm is a BIPOC and abolitionist-led farm that grows and distributes vegetables and other goods to communities with limited access to fresh produce, in addition to incarcerated people and their families. Herban Cura upholds community cultivation by providing inclusive spaces of healing, learning, and collaboration.

The limited edition Ghetto Gastro Beats Studio3 Wireless retails for $349.95 USD is available on August 27 at, Notre and SSENSE. 

News Restaurants Technology

800 Degrees Pizza Will Soon Operate 3,600 ‘Automated Pizzerias’

“800 Degrees by Piestro” machines, courtesy of Piestro and 800 Degrees Pizza

Today, 800 Degrees Pizza and Piestro, the robotic pizzeria, announced a partnership that would offer diners a fully automated pizza experience in thousands of locations nationwide.

Ever since the pandemic, demand for delivery and takeout options has increased alongside consumer pressure for more convenient food choices and the lack of restaurants’ access to labor. Anthony Carron, co-creator and head chef of 800 Degrees Pizza, wanted to address all three concerns by partnering with Piestro’s culinary technology.

This collaboration is set to bring the 800 Degrees Pizza brand to high-traffic locations through “800 Degrees by Piestro” machines, with a projected order volume of 3,600 units to be produced and sold by Piestro over five years.

Through Piestro, consumers can expect an automated, standalone, fully integrated cooking system and dispenser — that will deliver 800 Degrees’ artisanal pizzas within 3 minutes. 

#foodbeast Celebrity Grub Features Kitchen Gadgets Technology

T-Pain Battles Olivia Culpo In Foodbeast’s First Celebrity Kitchen League Match

Foodbeast’s Twitch cooking competition show, Kitchen League, is geared up for its first celebrity battle, with music icon T-Pain and supermodel and actress Olivia Culpo duking it out against each other this Thursday at 2pm PST. Kitchen League veteran chefs, Malika Lim of HyperRPG and Leon C. Brunson will be serving as the coaches to each respective contestant.

LG’s decided to join in on all the fun for this special Kitchen League Homestyle Challenge by providing a host of next-level appliances that introduce state-of-the-art technology to the Foodbeast kitchen arena.

For the unfamiliar, Kitchen League is a battle arena on the Foodbeast Twitch channel that is equal parts cooking and hijinks, with the audience given the power to either sabotage or protect the contestants. Sabotages can come in the form of chefs being forced to cook blindfolded or even have the use of kitchen utensils taken away from them for a period of time. Whatever the shenanigans, trust that the results are always entertaining and chaotic.

How T-Pain and Olivia Culpo can handle that type of heat in the Foodbeast Kitchen League arena remains to be seen, but know that we’re all in for a dynamic matchup that pits T-Pain’s appetite and cocktail-making prowess against Culpo’s kitchen skills and restaurateur experience. It’s Kitchen League, of course, so trust we’ll be wowed throughout much of the competition.

Catch this much-anticipate livestream on the Foodbeast Twitch channel here at 2pm PST.

Fast Food Technology

KFC Partners With CASETiFY For A Line Of Tech Accessories

Photo: KFC

Today, CASETiFY a global lifestyle brand that specializes in customized tech accessories, announced a new collaboration with KFC to release a fried chicken-themed collection.

This is perfect if you’re a fried chicken connoisseur like me who’s not afraid to show it in every aspect of their life, tech gadgets included. The crispy CASETiFY x KFC collection will consist of printed stainless steel water bottles, AirPods and AirPods Pro cases, iPhone 12 phone cases, and a lanyard. One thing to note, the iPhone 12 cases are layered with CASETiFY’s antimicrobial coating, DEFENSiFY, for an added bonus of safety and protection.

The CASETiFY x KFC collection launches on August 26, though fans can register now at for priority access.

Fast Food News Technology

The Futuristic ‘Taco Bell Defy’ Restaurant Introduces A New Drive-Thru Experience

Photo: Taco Bell

Taco Bell is a standout when it comes to innovation in the fast food game. They’ve proven their forward-thinking prowess with a constant flow of new menu items and tweaks to their brand. This time around, Taco Bell is looking to modernize the fast food drive-thru experience.

This new restaurant concept is called ‘Taco Bell Defy’, a 3,000 square foot space in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota dedicated to keeping the digital consumers’ experience in mind.

Taco Bell Defy was built in partnership with Taco Bell franchisee Border Foods and Minneapolis-based Vertical Works Inc. and changes the drive-thru experience with three of four lanes dedicated to mobile or delivery order pick-ups, with skip-the-line service for Taco Bell app customers. Mobile orders can be redeemed with digital check-in screens through unique QR codes, while orders are fulfilled through a proprietary contactless lift system. What’s more, two-way audio and video technology creates a seamless and contactless process between customers and staff.

Fast Food Technology

This Pizza Vending Machine Company Will Begin 2021 Rollout Of Machines Across U.S.

Launched last year in a successful pilot program, Basil Street is a new take on brick oven-style pizza, think via a familiar yet high-tech vending machine model. Utilizing what’s described as an automated pizza kitchen (APK), customers are treated to signature pies topped with fresh ingredients in only 3 minutes.

California, Texas, North Carolina and Nevada were first in the quality taste test line, proving to be viable markets for the APK. Considering the covid climate, combined with an increasing demand for on-the-go foods, there’s no surprise people have taken to a new automated approach. 

With three rotating 10-inch Italian style thin-crust pizzas to choose from, and a price point between $4.95-$14.95, Basil Street’s APKs are made specifically for ‘za lovers. Each offers three selections which include traditional staples like four-cheese, pepperoni, and supreme. They keep things interesting by offering a seasonal “Pizza of the Month” option. Basil Street’s CEO Deglin Kenealy shares the upstart’s gourmand-focused goals:

“Automated food kiosks are accepted globally as a viable option for meals on the go. As the need for contact-free solutions rises in the U.S., we have successfully combined America’s favorite meal with patented technology to deliver restaurant-quality food at the touch of a button.”

By Fall 2021, Basil Street intends to expand beyond the initial five APK’s to an impressive 50, located in states across America. To help achieve this, the brand has announced their official regulation A+ round filing and commencement of a crowdfunding reservation period. Regulation A+ is a type of offering which allows private companies to raise up to $50 Million from the public. Through SeedInvest, you’re able to support Basil Street’s automated pizza dreams starting at an affordable share price of $2.82.  

Basil Street is aiming to change how you enjoy tasty pies while retaining the experience of your favorite Italian pizzeria. Each year over four billion pizzas are consumed in the United States — that’s more than half of the world’s population. Suffice to say, last year’s pandemic couldn’t put an end to America’s pie-demic.

As part of their 2021 rollout, Basil Street just placed their APK in downtown Denver last month. If everything goes according to plan, one may land in your city sooner rather than later.