tim hortons automated

Ontario Tim Hortons now serving coffee and donuts using a fancy robo-conveyor

Getting a cup of coffee or a box of Timbits is a process that's changed considerably over the years as new technologies make our lives more convenient.

Advances like tap-to-pay technology and mobile pickup have streamlined notoriously long Tim Hortons lines, and the reigning monarch of caffeination in Canada just rolled out yet another fancy tech upgrade to get people their coffee and snacks even faster.

Drivers pulling up to a handful of Tims drive-thru locations are finding something out of the ordinary, the coffee and baked goods titans trialling new automated drive-thru pickup points at select restaurants including one right here in Ontario.

A representative of Tim Hortons tells blogTO that the experiment launched at "the Tims restaurant in Tecumseh, Ontario, just outside of Windsor." The restaurant "is the first location to be trialling this technology," a sort of robo-waiter that eliminates face-to-face interaction and the need to acknowledge another human in your haggard pre-coffee state.

The Tims representative explains that "the conveyor double drive-thru format allows team members to send a guest's order over the first drive-thru lane so two lanes of guests can be placing orders," essentially doubling a restaurant's capacity to accept orders.

A guest's food and/or beverages then travels along the conveyor system, moving from the restaurant to an automated receiving box with electronic doors in the drive-thru pickup area.

There will be even more ways to order your double-double on the horizon, as the Tim Hortons rep confirms that the automated drive-thru system is "just one of a number of new formats we are testing at Tims restaurants in 2022," including formats better suited to urban, pedestrian-forward locales like Toronto.

Tims may not have solved other outstanding issues like the brand's contribution to the excessive coffee cups piling up in landfills, the general ethical questions about the sourcing of coffee beans, and broken Iced Capp machines, but at least they've devised a way to prevent groggy-eyed motorists from having to face an actual human in their most irritable hours.

Lead photo by

Tim Hortons


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