Laguardia Aiport this past weekend, I sat down to eat a quick meal in what is
becoming a more standard way of ordering food in airports – via an iPad at your
seat. The iPad contained all restaurant functionality allowing you to order
food, drinks, and even duty-free items (all replete with both pictures as well
as descriptions), without having to wait for a waiter, making the process much
more seamless and efficient. The option to order directly for checkout was also
quite convenient. Afterwards, you could then use the iPad to surf the web and
find out airport / flight info. In general, the ease of ordering instantly and
removing the middleman strikes me as the way of the future, although supplying
that many iPads and docks is fairly capital intensive. What I was particularly
impressed with, however, was the mini-game option that popped up after

mini-game was a simple “find the shape that’s not like the others,” which was
great and a fun way to kill a little time. After sucking you in, however, the
app then gave you the option of paying $2 dollars to try and solve 5 more
puzzles in a limited amount of time (under 18 seconds), and if you could do it
you’d get your meal free. I love the psychology behind this: they’re targeting
an already bored and somewhat distracted audience looking for entertainment,
using a great trigger of a pop-up directly after you’ve ordered (my exact
thought process, which I’d imagine is exactly what they’re looking for, was “wow that meal was kind of expensive…but I must
be better at these mini games then most people maybe I can earn it all back”
Moreover, since the machine already had my credit card information the effort
it took for me to engage and play the game was extremely minimal, and made me
inclined to play it a few more times before realizing I was throwing money down
the drain.