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YWaiter debuts LBS commerce app for restaurants

May 25, 2010

Mobile bill payment is a key feature of the YWaiter app

Mobile bill payment is a key feature of the YWaiter app

YWaiter is targeting both consumers and food-service businesses with its location-aware, commerce-enabled mobile dining application.

Intuitive and easy to use, YWaiter highlights the four major restaurant categories: full-service dine-in, fast casual dine-in, takeout and delivery. The application features reservations, placement and management of dining-in, delivery, take-out orders and bill payment.

“YWaiter was developed out of the desire to want to get a check more quickly at the end of a meal—the wait time can be frustrating, we couldn’t get the server’s eye, there was added stress when we were on the way for a meeting or a movie or something,” said Dan Calderone, cofounder/CEO of YWaiter, Phoenix.

“My business partner and I have tech backgrounds and own a software company that develops programs to meet the time-sensitive needs of the transportation industry,” he said. “Based on the needs of that industry, we realized we could come up with something for the food service industry—and YWaiter was born.”

YWaiter, which launched last month, is a division of Mobile Bytes LLC.

Global Payments Inc. provides all of YWaiter’s electronic payment functions.

Y wait for mobile commerce?
YWaiter is currently available in the United States for the iPhone, with Android and BlackBerry versions coming soon.

YWaiter provides restaurant partners with free and multi-tiered paid services to promote their business to an engaged audience with customer acquisition and retention opportunities, customizable branding and marketing, marketing/coupon opportunities and order management and business tools.

YWaiter can be integrated with many point-of-sale systems, eliminating hand-entry since orders from customers using YWaiter automatically appear in the participating partners’ POS system.

Free to consumers, YWaiter helps users to find nearby restaurants and bars, make a reservation, place an order, add to an existing order, alert the server, pay the bill, get automatic tip calculations and earn partner coupons via the customer’s smartphone.

YWaiter offers four tiers of service: free, basic, professional and premium.

With the free offering, YWaiter provides the initial tools and the platform to get partners started, including management alerts, mobile ordering and payments.

With the basic offering, the YWaiter team offers additional tools and marketing services, as well as a full reservations interface and one support session per month.

With the professional offering, YWaiter adds unlimited monthly support along with unlimited marketing campaigns.
The premium offering includes all of the above, plus POS integration of menus and orders.

In addition, some services are available á la carte at all service tiers.

“YWaiter offers restaurant partners an additional revenue stream to reach hungry mobile users anywhere, anytime, Mr. Calderone said. “YWaiter is a location-aware app, enabling users to find their favorite restaurants or discover new ones.

“YWaiter can help boost customer acquisition and retention through customizable branding and marketing of a participating restaurant to smartphone users, a desirable target group that is growing exponentially,” he said.

“There are also exclusive marketing, promotions and coupon opportunities, limited only by the creativity of our restaurant partners.”

During the current phase of its launch, YWaiter is not using advertising to get the word out about the application.

“Word of mouth is YWaiter’s most powerful marketing tool, and one that is enhanced by partner marketing, promotions and coupon offers,” Mr. Calderone said. “Customers also receive incentives to put their favorite restaurants in touch with YWaiter.

“In addition, we are conducting PR campaigns, professional networking and media outreach to raise awareness,” he said.

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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