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Restaurant chain Wagamama has launched an iPhone app for ordering from its restaurants, the first app of its kind in the UK. 

In the US, Burger King and Pizza Hut have both managed to drive incremental sales through ordering apps, so perhaps a Wagamama app could work. I've been trying it out...

The app is simple enough to use; simply select a restaurant, either via GPS or buy typing in a postcode, and browse the menu. 

There are a few irritations when adding items though; the menus can be slow to load, and it took me a while before I realised that, to select the number of items you have to scroll up and down the list if numbers, not tap on the required number. Perhaps I'm being slow, but it seems this could be more intuitive. 

Also, one or two of the error messages weren't very clear. On the screenshot underneath, it turns out that I had attempted to place the order less than 15 minutes before the pick up time.

 This wasn't made clear by this garbled error message, which is also something which could give people second thoughts about entering their card details:  

On a more positive not, the checkout and payment process has been well-designed for mobile users, meaning it is relatively easy to use. 

The fields are clear, and there isn't too much data entry to be done.  The only payment method is by card payment, and this is selected by using the 'card type' menu, so the drop down for payment method is totally redundant, and placing it there, though it is greyed out, could be confusing for customers who wonder why nothing happens when they attempt to use it. 

Conclusion

In like the idea of an ordering app for restaurants like this; it could be useful for people on lunch breaks or with limited time to eat who'd like to save time by ordering ahead. It has also been well-received in the App Store reviews so far. 

In future, more personalised options would be a good idea, as would delivering some discounts and rewards to frequent users of the app. 

Wagamama has made a nice and simple ordering app with a straightforward interface but there are one or two issues which need to be sorted out to make the app more usable. 

Graham Charlton

Published 23 February, 2010 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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Comments (1)

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Fred

I can't find the app in the iTune store, Graham. have they removed it?  Anyways, I love Wagamama so I had to write: How Can Wagamama Embrace Social Media http://bit.ly/bMZXEx It'd be great to hear your thoughts. Cheers

over 5 years ago

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