Root C, the Tokyo coffee robot
Coffee-making is a true art in Japan. Between ancient traditions and rituals of the past, what is surprising are the many cutting-edge technologies of modern times, as well as the creation of original and dynamic formats. They are designed to meet the needs of contemporary customers in the big city hustle and bustle, without, of course, sacrificing taste. This is the case of ‘urban coffee vending machines’, usually located in stations or other metropolitan hubs and designed to offer good, fast and practical options at any time. And now there is the robot Root C that has an edge over the other vending machines, since it serves coffee drinks ordered by customers via app at the scheduled time.
How Root C works
You can order at any time and then pick up your drink at the stand located at the Shinbashi station south exit. Each coffee is made from carefully selected beans and you can choose from different roasts ranging from light to dark, as well as hot and cold options. To place the order, download the iOS or Android Root C app and select your drink and pick-up time. No chairs, no staff: it’s a simple automated stand capable of satisfying every customer. Consumers will find their coffee in a designated locker compartment to be opened up with the password received when ordering, so as not to create confusion and to ensure that everyone gets the right drink. A bit like the Amazon lockers, it is a fully automated system, ideal for those who do not have time to indulge in a good cup at the café but still want to treat themselves before going to work.
Root C’s subscriptions and locations
Choose it, pick it up and head off. You can add syrups, sugar or spices to taste. And that’s not all: for undecided customers, Root C provides an initial questionnaire to find the perfect brew and to suggest suitable options based on previous orders. Fans of black gold can purchase the monthly subscription for 1,980 yen (about £13/ €15) with 8 cups a month, or the unlimited one for 7,980 yen (about £51/ €60). In both cases, the first month is free. In addition to the main location at Shinbashi Station, other kiosks can also be found at the Marunouchi Chuo Building and at the Maach Ecute, but according to company new ones will be installed soon.
by Michela Becchi