Pre-pandemic, most people didn’t think twice about checking out at a supermarket or ordering in a restaurant. Now, after entering our PIN numbers or holding a menu, the new normal involves vigorous hand scrubbing and sanitizing. Given that, dozens of companies are now rushing to create more contactless experiences in public spaces. One such is Holo Industries, a brand of Convergence Promotions that provides holographic and contactless-touch solutions that can be used in place of elevator buttons, restaurant menus, check-out kiosks, and more.
I spoke with Glenn ImObersteg, the president of Convergence Promotions, on the phone this week about recent developments within Holo Industries. The development of the brand’s contactless-touch hologram units began in March 2020, just as COVID-19 hit in the U.S. COVID-19 spiked the demand for technology like this, and the company was able to have these units ready for use by May 1, 2020.
The hologram interface is made possible through the pairing of Neonode Touch Sensor Modules, the ASKA 3D Holographic plate from Asukanet, and other components from Holo Industries. The holographic menus are touch responsive, and when your finger touches a button mid-air, it triggers an audible response from the unit.
Contactless solutions alone won’t be able to save struggling restaurants from going under, but they may be able to reassure customers — who demand transparency around safety nowadays — and get more foot traffic into the dining room. So far Sevenrooms, Paytronix , Payjunction also offer variations of contactless order and pay systems.
Contactless ordering and payment may be a key component to easing customers back into dine-in restaurant service. A touch-less holographic kiosk removes the risk of coming into contact with germs, bacteria, and pathogens, and does not require cleaning. Holo’s units can be used as a menu, a method of paying for a meal, or even used to broadcast the menu from inside the restaurant to the outside.
The contactless and holographic units from Holo Industries currently cost about $2,500. Currently, the products from Holo Industries are being used by elevator companies, and the company is also piloting a kiosk program with two undisclosed restaurant companies. Holo Industries has yet to receive outside funding but is currently looking for investors to enable its expansion. The Sacramento-based brand will become its own company separate from Convergence Promotions in October 2020.