Coffee meets theatre as Starbuck adds a touch of Willy Wonka to their second roastery location in Shanghai, China. It is the drink giant's latest use of tech to draw you in, and the company will create their first ever-in-store Starbucks AR experience in what will be their largest store.
To make this Willy Wonka-esque a reality, Starbucks teamed up with Chinese tech giant Alibaba to create a custom roastery smartphone app. This will allow customers to walk around the store and point at different features delivering a tour of the store's equipment.
On every step of your journey, a digital menu will tell you the coffee roasting journey that will be experienced through playful animation, letting users virtually see the beans as they travel through copper pipes and various gadgets. Along the way, customers will be able to collect virtual badges, and once they have earned them all, they will receive a custom roaster social media filter to share.
"It’s like Alice in Wonderland meets Willy Wonka," said Emily Chang, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Starbucks, China. "It’s one thing to imagine a fully integrated in-store and digital experience, which brings together the impressive scale of the Shanghai roastery with the highest quality small-lot coffee beans, it’s quite another to watch the AR experience get built, and come to life."
There is no mention of whether or not you will see this AR experience in other Starbucks roasteries, but it is reasonable to expect that this won't be available at your corner Starbucks anytime soon.