Project: A mobile app for a breakfast sandwich eating robot. We know you want to learn more about this.

Status: Launched

Breaking the Mold

We had known Greg for a while from 1871 & during one of our impromptu conversations about this massive desire to build (get ready…!) a breakfast sandwich building robot! As we talked Greg gave me more insight into his professional background in both the restaurant and tech industry and how he was looking to combine the two and create Breakfast Box (BBOX). The more we talked the more we began to realize the potential of something like BBOX…

The basic concept behind Breakfast Box is that users can wake up and put in their order for a customized breakfast sandwich and/or coffee through the app and have it be perfectly cooked and ready for pickup. However, it’s once the order is placed that the true BBOX magic happens.

We setup a ‘geo-fence’ around the location of the first BBOX, which means that every second the user gets closer to the BBOX, then another ‘trigger’ happens moving their food to the next food prep stage.

For example, let’s say you live in Lincoln Park, Chicago. You wake up & place an order for a Breakfast Sandwich (with extra bacon!) and a medium coffee. You work at the Merchandise Mart, and there happens to be a BBOX there as well. You hop on the brown line, and start heading south to the BBOX. Once you get closer (let’s say 2000 yards) your eggs start being made. Then you get closer and the bacon starts to get heated up, your sandwich gets assembled, etc. So, the goal is when you get to the BBOX, not only is your sandwich cooked perfectly, but you don’t wait in line!

As amazing as the idea is, Greg still had a few reservations about it because of it’s complexity and his limited budget. BBOX has a simple / clean branding & aesthetic that appeals to its’ young target market of 18-35 year olds living in large cities like Chicago, New York, and San Francisco, who live fast paced lives and are constantly on the go .

BBOX involves a lot of moving parts & not only did we have to account for the consumer placing and receiving their proper order, but we also had to make sure the food was prepared at the correct time. In addition, we also had to handle payment processing, network outages, and create an admin dashboard for the sandwich operators.

Area for quote from client

The creation of the perfect breakfast

While the long-term goal is to build a breakfast sandwich making robot, we first started out with a “pop-up restaurant” with 5-6 people inside in order to help understand the timing & any ‘fail variables’. Since making sure the customer had a tasty & hot sandwich every time was a major goal, we created a way for customer’s to “jump orders”. Here’s an example:

Let’s say that user #200 had a standard breakfast sandwich without cheese and user 250 also had a standard breakfast sandwich without cheese. If user 250 gets to the box before user 200, then customer #250 would receive customer #200’s sandwich.

In total Breakfast Box took around 7 months to build. We went through 4 designs, user interviews, user testing, and taste testing of various types of sandwiches (our favorite part 😉 We really took the time to work out every aspect of the business and app with the client including building the iOS app, creating business models, and much more. Our tech stack for the 1.0 of BBOX with a Ruby / Sinatra API, an Angularjs. Dashboard, and native iOS & Android Apps.

Breakfast Box grand opening

Our results greatly exceeded expectations, as we were hoping to have 150 daily customers for our two week trial period. We 3x’d it with 500+ orders and selling out every single day. The only downside was that we did not have the Android app up yet, and ran into a few unforeseen scaling issue. However, since it was V1.0, we were all ecstatic with the results. Currently, Greg is in California building the robot that would allow fully autonomous ordering, creating, and breakfast goodness. By early 2017, you’ll be able to taste your first BBOX sandwich!

Check it out