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Taco John’s pilots drive-thru voice AI

taco johns ai drivethru

SAN CARLOS, Calif., June 03, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Presto Automation Inc., one of the largest AI and automation technology providers to the restaurant industry, today announced that it has been collaborating with Taco John’s and Qu to implement a Presto Voice drive-thru pilot at select Taco John’s restaurants.

Presto Voice enhances the drive-thru staff’s productivity by reducing the time they devote to taking orders, allowing them to focus on more critical tasks and reducing associated labor costs. It also provides customizable upsells to increase revenue and improve the guest experience with immediate, friendly service around the clock.

Qu’s unified commerce platform delivers consistent data-driven experiences across all Taco John’s ordering channels and locations. Presto has seamlessly integrated its Voice AI solution with Qu’s point-of-sale and kitchen production technologies to enable automated voice orders to be quickly and accurately managed end-to-end within Taco John’s existing technology platform.

“Taco John’s and Qu have been exceptional partners for Presto because they understand that the technology behind Presto Voice can be seamlessly coupled with a restaurant’s existing technology stack to drive operational efficiencies and improve the guest experience,” said Gee Lefevre, Interim CEO at Presto.

Presto Voice’s initial Taco John’s pilot location in Minnesota went live in April 2024. As a result of its success, Presto and Taco John’s are rolling Presto Voice out to a second location in Taco John’s origin state, Wyoming, which is scheduled to go live before August.

“Preliminary test results have been very positive,” said Ryan Baune, Vice President for Technology at Taco John’s. “We are seeing improvements around speed of service, order accuracy, and an increase in average ticket size primarily driven by upsell attachment.”

“As Taco John’s looks to the future, Presto Voice is a natural fit to our technology roadmap. Presto and Qu’s development during this process has unlocked the ability for orders being taken by the Voice AI assistant to show up in real-time on the kitchen screens,” said Steve Smyth, Director of Restaurant Technology at Taco John’s.

“The technology allows our restaurants to focus on making the guest’s orders as they place them to help improve the speed of service and accuracy. Another benefit is not worrying about interrupting the guest at the pickup window to take an order for another guest; this helps to improve the personal interaction with the guest. We are excited about the future possibilities of Voice AI and feel that the best is yet to come.”

“Qu is designed from the ground up to support robust, bi-directional, AI-powered integrations, meeting the stringent speed and customer experience requirements necessary for a first-class voice AI solution like Presto Voice,” noted Brian Crum, VP of Product at Qu. “The pilot phase with Taco John’s showcases how our collaborative efforts delivered an integrated and scalable solution. By enabling Voice AI natively within Qu’s unified commerce platform, we eliminate the need for bolt-on or redundant interfaces, seamlessly incorporating AI into the order-taking and making process. We are thrilled to see this development come to life, enabling Taco John’s to leverage the benefits of AI in their restaurants.”

Taco John’s operates and franchises nearly 400 restaurants in 23 states, making it one of America’s largest and fastest-growing Mexican quick-service restaurant brands. After completing the pilot phase, Taco John’s intends to roll out Presto Voice to their franchised locations this year.

About Presto Automation
Presto (Nasdaq: PRST) provides enterprise-grade AI and automation solutions to the restaurant industry. Presto’s solutions are designed to decrease labor costs, improve staff productivity, increase revenue, and enhance the guest experience. Presto offers its AI solution, Presto Voice, to quick-service restaurants (QSR) and has some of the most recognized restaurant names in the United States as its customers.

About Taco John’s
Founded in 1969 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, Taco John’s®?has been serving?bigger. bolder. better.?flavors for more than 55 years. Now, Taco John’s operates and franchises nearly 400 restaurants in 23 states – making it one of the largest Mexican quick-service restaurant brands in America. Taco John’s features signature specials like Taco Tuesday since 1989 and everyday value starting at $2, $3 and $4 on the ValuEST Menu. With bold originals like Potato Olés®, Taco John’s knows how to Olé The Day. Taco John’s prides itself on serving generous portions of its signature menu items that are made-to-order using fresh, high-quality ingredients, seasoning, and sauces. The brand was listed on?Entrepreneur’s?“Top Food Franchises of 2023” under the “Mexican Food” category and was recently recognized by?QSR Magazine?as a “Top 15 Chain Ready to Contend as Fast Food’s Top Players.”

About Qu
Qu is evolving restaurant POS to create a truly connected restaurant experience for guests and operators at quick-service and fast-casual restaurants. Qu’s industry-leading, cloud-native Unified Commerce Platform fuses the ordering, operations, and guest engagement functions, delivering the real-time data needed to drive loyal, repeat guests. Based in Bethesda, MD, Qu is backed by leading restaurant entrepreneurs and investors including Cota Capital, Enlightened Hospitality Investments (EHI), Bobby Cox Companies, and NRD Capital. Visit