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New Sensor Will Find You a Seat at Your Favorite Coffee Shop

Never get stuck waiting for a chair again.

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You may never have to experience the disappointment and frustration of schlepping to a coffee shop and not being able to find a seat ever again. According to Wired, Portland, Ore.-based start-up Workfrom, which reviews places with Wi-Fi "based on how friendly they are to remote workers," now shows users how many open tables there are at a coffee shop in real time.

Workroom has partnered with San Francisco-based tech company Density to offer this service. Density makes a sensor that "can be installed on the door frame of a business entrance to count how many people come in an out." The device then transmits that count in real-time to a database for analysis. Not only can the gadget save customers time by showing them where tables are actually available, but it could also "help small businesses attract more customers during slow periods." Workfrom currently only offers this information for a handful of coffee shops in the Portland area.

A number of companies, including Google, are aiming to help customers deal with busy restaurants and coffee shops. Last month, the search giant announced a new feature that reveals the busiest times for restaurants, stores, and a number other businesses. There is also a new app that allows users to reserve seats at local coffee shops. Called Croissant, the app automatically charges customers for the amount of time they work at a venue. Users will also be able to pay for food and drink purchased at coffee shops through the app.

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