SmartOrders: A BLE and NFC Enabled Android-Based Offline Ordering System for Restaurants
Ordering systems for restaurants offer a great way to offload work from restaurants, in taking orders, and lessens the burden of customers needing to acquire and interact with a waiter. In this paper we investigate the feasibility of an offline ordering system for restaurants that only uses commodity hardware (smartphones) and communicates entirely over Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE). This stands in contrast to current systems, which either require special hardware at the tables or that the customer uses a smartphone application that functions over the Internet. Using technology such as BLE and Near Field Communication (NFC) we propose a system to handle the interaction between the restaurant and customer, along with a prototype implementation, SmartOrder, that demonstrates the feasibility of the system. SmartOrder shows that common concerns such as the range and throughput of BLE are either not a concern or at least acceptable. The prototype implementation achieves a range of 71 meters with no obstacles and 12 meters around corners (6 meters on each side). Data throughput is shown to be somewhat slow, but this is acceptable since data transfers happen infrequently. Finally, both of these limitations are addressed with potential solutions.
Keywords: Mobile Application, Offline Systems, Smart Systems, Order Systems, BLE, NFC
M. Zipperle, C. Laustsen, A. Rikvold, â€œSmartOrders: A BLE and NFC Enabled Android-Based Offline Ordering System for Restaurantsâ€, Engineering Intelligent Systems, vol. 28 no. 1, pp. 61-68, 2020.