The IoT scenarios in the coffee machine industry
Coffee has a great history and tradition behind it. Consumed all over the world, it is a drink that has been able to integrate with different cultures, so much so that each country has different ways of consumption and preparation.
The coffee industry, although it has ancient roots, does not appear to be anchored in the past. Indeed, it looks to the future and the surrounding evolution with the aim of improving itself. And to achieve these goals, new technologies, including the IoT, prove to be particularly interesting and suitable for meeting multiple needs.
To understand how the IoT and digital solutions can generate value for the coffee sector, it is appropriate to distinguish the areas of work.
Coffee machines segmentation
The coffee machine industry is growing rapidly. It reached 13.20 in turnover in 2021 and is estimated to reach 17.73 billion by 2028.
But what are the segments in which the coffee industry operates?
We have highlighted three:
- home context
- Hotellerie-Restaurant-Café sector (ho.re.ca)
- vending machines
What is happening today is that these three areas become hybrid. In fact, it is possible to find coffee machines belonging to the ho.re.ca segment but also vending machines in the offices. In the same homes there can be systems made for the home but also for ho.re.ca. And in the same public places we find vending systems and ho.re.ca.
As a result, there may be specific goals, but at the same time, common goals increase.
Relevant trends on the future of the sector.
What are the trends involving digital technologies and the world of coffee machines?
- habits and experiences for the end user
- contexts of use
Also in this case the three areas intersect. In fact, if you think about the different situations in which you find yourself consuming a coffee, technology can provide that added value for detailed analysis, and can also ensure an experience for the user / customer.
Connected machines and apps
Digital technologies support coffee machines in multiple ways. To know if the machine parameters are set correctly, constantly, to have a perfect quality in the cup, a function that can be managed directly from your smartphone. And it is a proposal that adapts both to the needs of the home, and of the bar.
If you think about the bar or the ho.re.ca sector more generally, it allows you to manage orders and improve productivity; at home, on the other hand, it allows you to obtain a creamy, dense, and full-bodied coffee for a quality experience, as if you were having an espresso outside. This is also a trend that has become quite popular starting in 2020.
The advantages, however, can also reach the manufacturer, since with this system he can monitor daily data, update the machines, and even send videos. An example could be promotional messages.
Home automation and smart machines
The domestic context is implementing a series of smart appliances. Among these we find the coffee machines that integrate well into a home automation system.
The first experiments in this sector concern management and focus on the control panel. This, in fact, can be present in a specific app, available on smartphones and tablets, so that you can perform the different actions even from a distance.
The same mechanism also occurs if you want to use a voice system, such as Alexa, Google Home, Apple HomePod …
Through these devices it will therefore be possible to choose the drink, customize it by completing the entire process without touching the machine. In addition to this, the tastes chosen and the times of use of the machine are memorized.
Offering a complete experience is essential when addressing the end-user. Both in the domestic context, therefore without assistance, and when receiving a service, it is possible to create unique situations.
Personalized choices based on previously registered tastes, new blends to try, ad hoc decorations are just some of the services that can be chosen. A real “conversation” is then started between the machine and the user.
These are experiences that do not only concern the ho.re.ca sector but increasingly the home context. In fact, increasing number of consumers decide to buy machines whose functionality is the same as the machines installed in bars. It is a growing phenomenon that is aimed at a demanding customer segment, open to experimentation and interested in technology.
Interventions and preventive maintenance
Through telemetry and connectivity systems it is possible to collect timely data that allow to improve the maintenance of the coffee machine even remotely.
From a distance it becomes easy to program the maintenance service, thus guaranteeing quality coffee and a machine that is always performing.
Not only maintenance but also assistance in real time when anomalies occur. All this is necessary so that the problems are resolved in the shortest possible time.
Not only technology but also sustainability!
The IoT, in addition to bringing important benefits to the user, pays attention to the sustainable side.
To minimize the impact on the environment, the data collected are useful for monitoring the consumption of the machines. In this way it is possible to intervene if an anomaly occurs or simply to adapt one’s habits to a style with less waste.
An increasingly requested aspect that is part of the circular economy model.