Wendy’s latest test will have robots deliver food orders through tunnels

An image showing the underground delivery service at Wendy’s
Cars will pull up beside an “Instant Pickup portal.” | Image: The Wendy’s Company

After announcing plans to use an AI chatbot at its drive-thrus, now Wendy’s is piloting a robot-powered “underground delivery system” for online order pickups. The system, which will be built through a partnership with the autonomous logistics company Pipedream, will have robots travel through tunnels to transport online food orders from Wendy’s kitchens to the “Instant Pickup portals” that sit beside parking spaces.

When a customer arrives at a space, they talk to the restaurant crew through the Instant Pickup portal’s speaker to confirm their order. From there, an autonomous robot will traverse a set of tunnels to deliver the food to the customer’s parking space. Wendy’s says Pipedream’s system uses “temperature-controlled delivery…

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