Coca-Cola Freestyle

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A Coca-Cola Freestyle machine installed at a Wendy's restaurant in Irving, Texas.

Coca-Cola Freestyle is a touch screen soda fountain introduced by The Coca-Cola Company in 2009. The machine features over 125[1][2][3] different Coca-Cola drink products,[4] and custom flavors.[5] The machine allows users to select from mixtures of flavors of Coca-Cola branded products which are then individually dispensed. The machines are currently located in major Coca-Cola partners and retail locations as a part of a gradual and ongoing deployment. Most machines have Pibb Xtra or Pibb Zero, although some have Dr Pepper or Diet Dr Pepper. The machines have faced some consumer complaints due to long lines as a result of extra time it takes for consumers to decide on a product to dispense. [6]

Design[edit]

Freestyle cartridge, in the machine
Pininfarina logo on Coca-Cola Freestyle machine

The cabinetry was designed by the Italian automotive design firm Pininfarina, via their Pininfarina Extra industrial and product design subsidiary.[7] Technologies involved include microdispensing technology and proprietary PurePour technology. Both technologies were originally developed to deliver precise doses of drugs.[1] One Freestyle unit with a similar footprint to a current vending machine can dispense 126 kinds of carbonated and non-carbonated beverages. Microdosing blends one or more concentrated ingredients in 46 US fl oz (1.36 L) packets with water and sweetener at the point where the beverage is dispensed,[4] thus avoiding the use of traditional 5 US gal (18.9 L) boxes of syrup (also known as a bag-in-a-box).[8] Cartridges store concentrated ingredients in the dispenser cabinet and are RFID enabled. The machine uses RFID chips to detect its supplies and to radio resupplying needs to other units. The machines transmit supply and demand data to both Coca-Cola and the owner including brands sold, times of the day of sales, troubleshooting information, and service data.[9] The traditional ice cube dispenser remains.[10]

History[edit]

Contractors for its development include:

Testing began in Utah,[1] Southern California,[4][10] and Georgia in July 2009 with 60+ locations around America planned by the end of that summer.[19] Test locations around Coca-Cola's home city of Atlanta included the World of Coca-Cola, AMC Theatres Southlake Pavilion 24 and Parkway Point 15,[10][20] and area food chains, including Willy's Mexicana Grill.[21] Three machines are available in the Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure theme parks as well as the AMC movie theater at Downtown Disney shopping complex in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. One of the largest movie theater chains in the US, Carmike Cinemas, installed the machines in several markets including the Carmike 13 in Champaign, IL.

Coca-Cola Freestyle stand at Cedar Point amusement park.

Coca-Cola deployed the machines to 500 more locations in the United States in June 2010,[22] followed by deployment to some universities in the United States. Deployment has continued in select locations of restaurant chains such as Wing Stop, Così,[23] Taco Time Northwest,[24] Roy Rogers,[25] Davanni's,[26] Dairy Queen,[27] Fuddruckers,[28] Five Guys,[29][30] Kelly's Roast Beef,[31] CG Burgers,[32] Firehouse Subs,[33] Pei Wei Asian Diner, Wendy's, Beef O'Brady's, Hess Express, Boloco[34] and Salsarita's. Select Wegmans locations also have Coca-Cola Freestyle machines. Burger King announced in December 2011 that it plans to implement the Freestyle system in its 850 company-owned restaurants in the USA by the spring of 2012, and is encouraging its franchisees to follow suit.[35]

Coca-Cola has installed Freestyle machines in Canada in select Wendy's, Burger King, and Hero Certified Burgers restaurants, as well as entertainment venues, such as Cineplex Entertainment cinemas and Canada's Wonderland.[citation needed]

In late June 2012 Coca-Cola started a limited trial in the UK (in association with Burger King UK), with the machine initially deployed in 16 locations around Greater London.[36] They are also now in Five Guys UK branches.[37] The selection of brands available from a UK coke freestyle machine is different from the USA, as only brands that are usually sold in the UK are available. Schweppes Lemonade and still versions of Fanta are brands that are available.[38]

Price[edit]

The machines are leased for $300 per month ($3,600 per year), approximately 60%[citation needed] more than a standard Coca Cola fountain.

Products[edit]

Customers choose a base product,[39] which they can supplement with additional flavoring. Diet and Zero products remain low or no calorie even with flavorings added. The machines include flavors not previously available to the American market, including Orange Coke, which was previously sold only in Russia and the Baltics (and briefly in the United Kingdom and Gibraltar).[11]

Flavors[edit]

Base product Available flavors[40]
Regular Vanilla Lime Raspberry Cherry Orange Cherry Vanilla Lemon Strawberry Grape Peach Fruit Punch Raspberry Lime Orange Vanilla
Coca-Cola
Diet Coke
Coca-Cola Zero
Caffeine-Free Diet Coke
Sprite
Sprite Zero
Fanta
Fanta Zero
Minute Maid Lemonade
Minute Maid Light
Dasani (water)
Dasani Sensations
Powerade N/A
Powerade Zero N/A
Hi-C N/A
Mello Yello (replaces Vault)
Mello Yello Zero
Pibb Xtra/Dr Pepper
Pibb Zero/Diet Dr Pepper
Barq's
Diet Barq's
Seagram's Ginger Ale
Seagram's Diet Ginger Ale
Seagram's Sparkling Seltzer Water
Seagram's Seltzer
Water (tap)
Carbonated Tap water

Green – Available Option Pink – Not an Available Option

Freestyle fountains located in Firehouse Subs locations offer the chain's signature Cherry Lime-Aid.[41]

Freestyle fountains at Sea World Orlando offer an exclusive vanilla-flavored freestyle flavor called 'South Pole Chill.' [42]

Freestyle fountains located in Moe's Southwest Grill locations offer an exclusive vanilla-flavored freestyle flavor called 'Vanilla at Peachtree.' [43]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Wilson, Zachary (2010-05-10). "Coca-Cola's 100-Flavor Interactive Freestyle Soda Fountain in Action" (Web). Fast Company. Retrieved 2010-05-12. 
  2. ^ Eaton, Kit (2010-05-10). "Coke's Freestyle Machines Ready to Rock Tongues With 104 Flavors" (Web). Fast Company. Retrieved 2010-05-12. 
  3. ^ Bell, Josh (2010-03-17). "ShoWest’s coolest offerings" (Web). Las Vegas, Nevada: Las Vegas Weekly. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  4. ^ a b c Luna, Nancy (2009-07-21). "Video: Coca-Cola Freestyle demo & how it works". Orange County Register. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  5. ^ "Coca-Cola Freestyle Touch Screens" (photo). The Coca-Cola Company. 2009-09-21. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  6. ^ http://www.practicallyefficient.com/home/2011/12/14/freestyle
  7. ^ Ozler, Levent (2009-09-11). "Pininfarina Partners With The Coca-Cola Company on Coca-Cola Freestyle". Dexigner. Retrieved 2011-12-22. 
  8. ^ Bigg, Matthew (2009-09-30). "Coca-Cola to expand testing of new drink fountain". Reuters. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  9. ^ a b "Bsquare-Coca-Cola team up on high-tech soda machine". Seattle, Washington: Puget Sound Business Journal. 2009-07-20. Retrieved 2009-08-25. [dead link]
  10. ^ a b c d e Collier, Joe Guy (2009-09-29). "Coke targets Freestyle expansion for 2010". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  11. ^ a b Goodwin, Jenifer (2009-07-22). "Futuristic, 100-flavor Coke dispenser tested". San Diego, CA: Union-Tribune. Retrieved 2009-08-25. 
  12. ^ "Coca-Cola's Freestyle, Dean Kamen, and More". Atlanta, Georgia: Businessweek. September 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  13. ^ [1]
  14. ^ Cook, John (2009-08-17). "Coke's 'coolest soda machine ever' utilizes Impinj's RFID chips". Tech Flash – Seattle's Technology News Source. Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  15. ^ Sullivan, Laurie (2009-08-17). "Coca-Cola 'Freestyles' a Smarter Soda Machine". Media Post Publications. Retrieved 2010-07-02. 
  16. ^ Collier, Joe Guy (2009-09-16). "Coke tests new dispenser in Atlanta". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  17. ^ Odyssey Software Enables New Coca-Cola Freestyle Fountains to Phone Home - WEST HENRIETTA, N.Y., Dec. 6, 2010 /PRNewswire/
  18. ^ "Plexus wins Coca-Cola work for new drink machine". 2009-06-10. 
  19. ^ "New soda machines customizes flavors". KGO-TV. 2009-07-22. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  20. ^ "Event @ AMC" (photo). The Coca-Cola Company. 2009-10-02. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  21. ^ Sweigart, Christ (2009-10-02). "More Flavors of Coke Coming to a Restaurant Near You" (video). Atlanta, Georgia: WXIA-TV. Retrieved 2010-05-13. 
  22. ^ "Coke's Freestyle Machines Ready to Rock Tongues With 104 Flavors". 2010-05-10. Retrieved 2010-06-10. 
  23. ^ "Cosi – Coke machines have 106 varieties". 2010-11-12. Retrieved 2010-11-14. 
  24. ^ JOHNSON, CHRISTIE. "'Coca Cola Freestyle' machines debut at Taco Time restaurants". KING 5 News. KING 5 Television. Retrieved 2011-03-18. 
  25. ^ "What to drink? Now you have more than 100 choices at Roy Rogers". Frederick News-Post. 2011-05-12. Retrieved 2010-06-09. 
  26. ^ [2]
  27. ^ "One Giant Leap for Soda Fountains". 2011-06-02. Retrieved 2011-06-05. 
  28. ^ "Wall Photos By Fuddruckers · 50 of 50". 2011-06-24. Retrieved 2011-06-24. 
  29. ^ "Our Parkville, MD location just got Coca-Cola Freestyle installed!". Parkville, MD: Five Guys. Retrieved 2012-05-21. 
  30. ^ Sams, Douglas (2011-06-21). "Coke expanding plant to make Freestyle dispenser". Retrieved 2011-07-21. 
  31. ^ "One Giant Leap for Soda Fountains". The Boston Globe. 2011-06-15. Retrieved 2011-06-27. [dead link]
  32. ^ "Coca-Cola Freestyle at CG Burgers". Retrieved 2011-10-18. 
  33. ^ "Firehouse Subs, Buffalo Wild Wings and Coca-Cola Freestyle". 
  34. ^ "Coca-Cola Freestyle at Boloco Natick". 
  35. ^ "Burger King to use Coke Freestyle machines". Marketwatch.com. 2011-12-06. Retrieved 2011-12-22. 
  36. ^ "Coca-Cola to go self-serve with BK". Retrieved 2012-07-02. 
  37. ^ https://www.fiveguys.co.uk/ourmenu
  38. ^ http://www.coca-cola.co.uk/freestyle/
  39. ^ "Coca-Cola Freestyle Jet Machine" (video). 2009-11-09. Retrieved 201-02-11. 
  40. ^ "100+ Flavor Selector". Coca-Coca. Retrieved 31 July 2012. 
  41. ^ "Firehouse Subs – Our Menu". Firehouse Subs. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  42. ^ "Inside Antarctica: Empire of the Penguin as SeaWorld Orlando unveils icy new realm with ‘cool’ new attractions – literally". Distant Creations Group, LLC. Retrieved 21 April 2014. 
  43. ^ "Sampling Vanilla at Peachtree Soda at Moe’s Southwest Grill". WLZW. Retrieved 15 May 2014. 

External links[edit]