Technology and the Internet are making more and more inroads into the food world, and it seems nearly impossible to make a meal decision without a quick jaunt online. But when diners surf the web, what exactly are they looking for? Researchers at OpenTable, the essential reservations app, looked into that subject, surveying 6,000 users, and seemingly found the answer. The main function of the Internet is to help plan a meal out.
OpenTable found more than 85 percent of those surveyed use the Internet to find the restaurant they want, look at the menu, and make a reservation. It would appear that these people aren't as interested in taking outside opinions into account when making plans: 60 percent say they go online to read amateur reviews, and 48 percent are looking for professional reviews.
Once they actually make it to a restaurant, 63 percent of those surveyed said they are decent human beings who put their phones away during the meal, according to a release from OpenTable. On the other hand, 25 percent are insufferable and "always" or "frequently" use their phones.
"Dining out, like virtually every other area of life, has been transformed by technology, but in an industry in which hospitality is paramount it's important to strike the right balance for your restaurant concept," OpenTable VP of restaurant and product marketing Leela Srinivasan said in a prepared statement.
Srinivasan is right about technology transforming the restaurant industry. Apps like OpenTable have revolutionized reservations and payments, and Silicon Valley giant Google is making it easier to order delivery and count calories.