Self Service Beer Taps Mean Less Waiting at the Bar
By: Rich DeMuro
Mar. 20, 2013
We pump our own gas, use ATMs to get money, and now one company is making bartending self-service.
The company is called iPourIt and their special system allows customers to pour their own beer using a Radio-frequency identification (RFID) wristband.
“My business partner and I were at a large bar that had plenty of taps and when I ordered a beer it took a long time to get it so i thought, why can’t I just walk up and pour my own beer,” said iPourIt’s Chief Technology Officer, Brett Jones.
Jones partnered with Joseph McCarthy, iPourIt’s CEO, and together brewed up the idea of an automated pouring system.
“It’s really simple,” said McCarthy. “All they have to do is give their server a license, they’ll open up a tab by going over to our management workstation… getting their wristband back.”
The wristband has a special wireless RFID chip inside that tracks the beer poured by a tenth of an ounce.
“Once you have an active wristband, tap it, open the tap, and you only pay for what you pour,” said McCarthy.
In addition to keeping an accurate pour count, the system keeps a record of the beers tasted for customers to rate later online. This means a cheaper way to try new beers and a method to categorize and share favorite brews.
“I tried seven beers last week and it cost me 50 bucks,” McCarthy said. “[I] tried seven beers today, cost me about $7.”
IPourIt says their high tech system can also save money for the bars because all of the beer is accounted for.
Added bonus, the system gives the bar owners a better understanding of, which beers are favored by patrons.
“I can find out what’s trending in the marketplace to see what type of ales or beers or lagers that they’re actually enjoying the most,” said Owner and General Manager of Tap House, which uses the iPourIt system.
Despite its convenience, IPourIt says the self-pouring system is not about getting over-drinking, but about discovering new beers many might not otherwise tried.
Two restaurants–the Tap House in Huntington Beach and the Tap Shack in Newport Beach–use the iPourIt system currently, but the company is looking to expand it nationally.