McDonald's AI Drive-Thru debacle is a warning to us all

A McDonald's Drive Thru sign
(Image credit: Jurij Kenda via Unsplash)

We've mentioned before the risks for brands jumping on the AI bandwagon too quickly. And that extends beyond using AI image generators to any kind of customer-facing application, as McDonald's may or may not have learned from its AI Drive Thru fiasco.

AI technology is advancing rapidly but remains in a state of relative infancy, and in many cases it just isn't good enough yet to implement without causing significant friction. The world's biggest fastfood brand has sensibly decided not to extend the contract on an AI voice recognition service and has told franchisees to remove the tech, but did it not think it should at least test it before it became the subject of viral videos?


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Joe Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news, features and buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment and software for creatives, from video editing programs to monitors and accessories. A veteran news writer and photographer, he now works as a project manager at the London and Buenos Aires-based design, production and branding agency Hermana Creatives. There he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing visual content and design assets for the hospitality sector. He also dances Argentine tango.