Forecasting in the Restaurant Industry, How Are Restaurants Keeping Up?

Forecasting is being used across the nation in order to find out what new foods and technologies are going to be used within the restaurant industry.  Since we are so attached to our technology, trends have changed drastically.

The reports are showing that about half of the consumers interested in eating out are looking at menus online in order to see if the restaurant is up to their standards.  Thus, making it possibly harder for restaurants to bring in new customers if their menu is not up to par.  This is especially important because ‘”the typical American palate is now much more sophisticated than 10 to 20 years ago.”’

Because of this forecasting in restaurants is now not only for how many customers are coming in, but the newest trends in food.  And restaurants are having some difficulties getting customers to come and sit down at their establishment because about seventy percent is now coming from take out and food trucks out of convenience.  Since seventy percent of the industry’s traffic is coming from off site many restaurants and food vendors have conformed to using food trucks that drive around neighborhood to neighborhood. However, the city of Chicago passed an ordinance that does not allow food to be prepared on the actual trucks.  This means that the vendors would either need a physical restaurant or at least access to a certified kitchen.  Due to this ordinance these vendors will have to either invest more money to continue or get out of the food truck industry.

In order to keep up with these constant changes in the restaurant industry technology is being more relied upon in the actual establishments to encourage guests to come sit down and eat.  For example, at a Chili’s restaurant you will find a tablet on the table where you can play games, watch move previews, and pay your bill.  However, it is being said that more restaurants will participate by having iPads, in which, you can look at the menu and see more detailed pictures and descriptions of the menu items.

Along with all of these trends, many consumers are now more conscious than ever about where there food actually comes from.  People are looking for sustainability especially in large cities where there are many neighborhoods that are considered food deserts.  Restaurants are recognizing this and most of the newly opened establishments really take pride in offering sustainable food that has come directly from local farms.  And other restaurants are changing their menus in order to be friendlier to locally grown ingredients.

Do you typically go out to eat at an actual restaurant or do you find yourself getting take out?

How do you feel about restaurants using more sustainably grown ingredients?

Would you rather go to a restaurant that uses technology such as iPads or tablets for the tables or just a simple mom and pop’s?

Virtuix Uses Virtual Reality to Promote Fitness

Virtual reality gaming has always a questionable form of video gaming due to its futuristic nature.  Recently the company Virtuix has been working with the XBOX Kinect to create a treadmill like interface to give video game users a more natural experience while playing games.

This new product is being called the Omni and it has a treadmill bottom and a fixed head piece that would allow video game users to feel like they are actually in the game.  Instead of just sitting on a couch with a controller this product would provide gamers with a chance to get up and move.  The revolution of gaming has advanced, but it does not seem like many of these are as concerned with fitness.  One of the only major ones is the Wii Fit, which is a fitness program for the Nintendo Wii.  Would this give Virtuix the competitive advantage that would be needed in this market?

Virtuix has said that they will be starting a Kickstarter campaign in order to get the funding that will be needed to produce these machines.  They used Youtube as there medium in order to introduce the world to this new concept of a machine. Virtuix also held a demonstration at this year’s SXSW in Austin, Texas.

Virtuix is calling the Omni “the first omni treadmill that is affordable for household consumers.” The news is saying that this gaming device will end up costing anywhere between $400 and $600.

The largest marks that Virtuix is trying to make are that they can provide gamers with a low price product that can be small enough to fit conveniently in any household.  But with every piece of technology there is always a chance that this product may not be as cost friendly as originally planned.

I think that this is a great piece of technology that will maybe push other competitors to make even more fitness friendly machines.  Video gaming has long been blamed for causing obesity, especially in America.  However, if Virtuix is able to sell their product to families globally maybe children and adults will be more interested in being active.  Exercising can get boring for adults, but if you are able to play video games while working out and feeling like you are physically there; maybe it will encourage more people to exercise regularly.  I’m curious to see if this product will successfully work and be able to sell these devices affordably for all households.


Do you think Virtuix has the competitive advantage against competitors and will Virtuix be able to successfully sell these products to all consumers?


Do you think XBOX would consider purchasing the rights and working together with Virtuix to continue to make strides in new virtual reality ventures?


Would you personally purchase this product?,2817,2417982,00.asp