Dec 072014

ccfreestyleObjectively, I think the Coca-Cola Freestyle soda fountain machines are pretty nifty. I like the options, and the quality of the dispensed product seems consistently high.

However, if self-service at a Coca-Cola Freestyle machine is your restaurant’s only method for selling soft drinks, then I’m not going to visit you anymore. It just takes too long. Even a customer familiar with the machine takes several times longer than s/he would at a conventional fountain. And if someone is genuinely bewildered by it, then forget it. You can take as long getting your drink as you did waiting at the counter for your food.

The answer, of course, is to install a Freestyle machine to supplement a conventional drink fountain. That way, folks in a hurry can use the regular unit while other folks fuss with the Freestyle. But, a lot of places don’t have the space for this, and even if they do they’re not likely to want to do that with it.

Gee, this complaint sounds familiar. Ah, yes: it’s the same one I had about stamps. The world is passing me by. And too many of you are happy with the way things are going, or they wouldn’t be going that way.

That’s OK. It’s the same kind of vibe that makes me unapologetic about my denim shorts.

I’m an old man at 43.

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 Posted by at 8:56 pm

  6 Responses to “The Coca-Cola Freestyle menace”

  1. THIS. I’ve only experienced 2 or 3 of these so far and they are excruciating. I’ll stick to tea, thanks.

  2. I haven’t encountered one yet. Where are they?

    • Miria, I mused on this post watching people use the one at the new Moe’s by the Madison Target. I think there’s one at the Firehouse by the Super Target too.

  3. So Bo, is your disdain for these contraptions that other people are in your way of a tasty beverage or that you feel the pressure of eyes on you as you wander through the menus trying to pick the right flavor?

    Personally I don’t like feeling like I’m holding up the process figuring the damn things out.

    • Definitely the former. As I noted above, even if you use one as quickly as possible, it still takes several times what a standard fountain takes. As a lunchmate noted today, it also means serial processing instead of parallel processing. After all, if you and I want beverages on opposite ends of the fountain from each other, we can get them simultaneously.

      It’s a substantial bottleneck. At least there is a bit of space for a gaggle at Five Guys. At Firehouse, it’s a complete disaster.

  4. I loathe those things especially when they are the only ice dispenser, too. Really? I just want ice for my tea and I have to wait for some dumb ass to figure out how to get diet coke out of the thing?

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