Sushi Restaurant Drones: London YO! Sushi Trials iTray Robot Waiters [VIDEO]

By iScienceTimes Staff on June 11, 2013 3:46 PM EDT

itray
A sushi restaurant in London is testing a drone called the iTray to bring food to its customers. (Photo: YouTube / YoSushiVids)

YO! Sushi, a restaurant chain based in London, has started bringing food to its diners in an innovative new way: using drones.

At one London YO! Sushi location, management is testing out the iTray, a flying drone-like gadget which brings food. The sushi restaurant drone can travel as fast as 25 miles an hour, which, as the Daily Mail notes, is more than six times the normal walking speed of a waiter.

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YO! Sushi's iTray drone, now in testing at its flagship Poland Street location in London, is controlled from an iPad via WiFi. The light-weight carbon fiber drone sports two HD cameras that allow an operator inside the restaurant to see where the drone is headed.

The iTray drone is a natural fit for YO! Sushi, a chain which is known for its innovative restaurant technology. YO! Sushi restaurants use waiter call buttons, robot drink trolleys, self-heating plates and kaiten conveyor belts, round sushi-moving apparatuses that bring food to customers.

"The concept came from our thinking of 'How are we going to show people how light and exciting and fun this food type is?'" said YO! Sushi CEO Robin Rowland, who developed the iTray drone to promote the new YO! Burger.

Waitress Gabriella Micu, 28, said of the iTray drone, "It's really fun for customers and I hope we can get to the point where we can serve guests from the central kitchen as it would definitely help to cut down the time walking around the restaurant."

Customers seem equally taken with the sushi restaurant's drone.

"When I ordered the burger I never imagined it would come flying towards me on a tray," said one customer, Mark Love. "It was amazing and the weirdest thing, like something out of a science fiction novel. It was delivered as if by magic, like an alien flying saucer bringing food directly onto my table."

If the sushi restaurant drone proves popular, it may be expanded to more YO! Sushi restaurants. There are 64 YO! Sushi restaurants in England.

The iTray drone has taken several months to develop, said Mike Lewis, YO! Sushi executive chef, "but with the YO! Burger and iTray we know guests will feel like they've had a taste of the future."

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