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Hospitality’s Guide to Hot Tech at CES 2020


While many of the new products at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) “won’t make it to prime time” there’s still value for a restauranteur to attend the show, says Joe Tenczar, Co-Founder, Restaurant CIOs, who has been attending the show for 10 years. “It gets you thinking about how these new innovations, and how they could potentially change the restaurant industry.”

Here are some of the new technologies that made their CES debut:

  • Shipping containers: for growing crops in a very controlled environment
  • Reusable shipping box: “This is something we’ll see probably sooner than later. The use of cardboard boxes today and the lack trackability … is phenomenal. It’s off the charts and getting worse all the time,” Tenczar says.
  • Drones: “The longevity of the batteries are getting higher. The payload is getting higher. So they’re getting to be real,” he says.
  • Last-Mile Delivery: Small electric vehicles that deliver food effectively.
  • Electronic Personal Stamp. “Instead of people putting in their phone numbers, are they going to put their digital stamp when they sign in at the host desk? Who knows where this is going to go,” Tenczar says.
  • Parallel reality: Multiple travelers could be looking at digital signage and that digital signage is customized to their individual itinerary and language preference. Delta Airlines is planning to test this in Detroit. 
  • Robots: Lots of robots that are designed and could be used in restaurants, but currently the cost is prohibitive for most operators, Tenczar notes. 
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