Tablet for 2 waiting at an Olive Garden near you soon

AP News
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Posted: Apr 14, 2015 12:30 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — Olive Garden has a tablet for two waiting for you.

The Italian restaurant chain said Tuesday that it is installing Ziosk computer tablets at all of its U.S. locations so customers can order and pay by touch screen.

Olive Garden, owned by Florida's Darden Restaurants Inc., started using Ziosk tablets in some of its restaurants last year. The chain said Tuesday that locations using the devices have experienced faster dining times and increased tip percentages for wait staff. It will start rolling them out at additional restaurants next month and expects the 7-inch devices to be in all of its more than 800 U.S. restaurants before year's end.

"We've been focused on improving the dining experience at every touch point, and we're excited to give our guests the ability to customize their visit by leveraging the technology of Ziosk's tabletop tablets," Dave George, Olive Garden president, said in a statement.

Tablets have made appearances in airports, where travelers can have food delivered to where they sit, but are still limited in the traditional restaurant scene. Ziosk tablets are in use at Chili's restaurants and are in the process of launching nationwide at Red Robin.

Darden's stock fell 47 cents to $68.13 in afternoon trading.