Briggo's intelligent Coffee Haus could make baristas obsolete


October 18, 2013

Briggo's Coffee Haus is now in use at the University of Texas at Austin

Briggo's Coffee Haus is now in use at the University of Texas at Austin

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Do you like visiting with that cute barista at the local coffee shop? Well, she/he may be on their way to being replaced by a machine ... maybe. This July, Texas-based company Briggo announced the installation of its first "intelligent" Coffee Haus on the University of Texas at Austin campus. The machine grinds and brews espressos, mochas and other specialty coffees on the spot, to the exact specifications of the customer.

The Coffee Haus is an improved version of an automated coffee-making kiosk that Briggo installed on the campus in 2011. The new machine uses "sustainable high-altitude Latin American direct trade coffee, fresh milk and gourmet syrups," plus it keeps users apprised of the status of their order, and it allows them to take a peek at its robotic workings as it prepares that order.

Users can place orders using either touchscreen controls on the machine itself, or via a mobile website interface on their smartphone – an iOS/Android app is in the works. That interface lets them stipulate exactly how they'd like their drink prepared, save drink orders that they like as favorites, and pre-purchase their coffee.

Additionally, it shows users the location of the closest machine, lets them know the current wait time, and sends them a text notification when their drink is ready to be dispensed.

Once a user tweaks their order to the point that they like it best, they can expect it to be prepared in that very fashion every time. With regular coffee shops, by contrast, quality can differ greatly depending on who happens to make your drink.

More Coffee Hauses are slated to appear in other US cities before too long. Baristas needn't necessarily start updating their resumés just yet, though – the arrival of pizza-making machines certainly hasn't put pizza cooks out of work, if that's anything to go by.

Source: Briggo via Quartz

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away. All articles by Ben Coxworth

Increasing the minimum wage too much will result in these machines appearing fast than you can say "trade labour for capital".

Jason Holman

I agree with Gadgeteer - With no baristas, who will put the neat pictures on top? Personally, I don't really care about the pix, but how many more ways are there left for students to work/pay their way through college? I have even heard of automated 'burger machines and pizza vending ditto, we're all doomed!

The Skud

If they're going to do this, they should go all the way. Put in a robotic arm to top each cup with latte art. Some people have already made such robots, letting them do dot matrix art. But something based on the X-Y plotters used for decades would also work and could probably make smoother, better looking vector art like the cliched leaf or flower. All 100% repeatable from cup to cup.


I think that is way cool even though I don't drink coffee. I don't think it would totally replace baristas when it comes to making coffees.


Come on, look at the pic of the machine. You know there's a real person in there making the coffee. Look at the swivel door through which the coffee is given. I bet they locked homeless people in there as slave labor. Soylent Green is people!

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