In a digital press conference held today, Pizza Hut has announced the launch of its new iPad and Android apps, adding to the company's already robust digital portfolio.
The new features augment the existing iPhone ordering app that was launched by the chain in 2009. Pizza Hut says it was the first pizza chain to launch the service, which boosted sales by more than $1 million within the first three months of its existence.
Baron Concors, chief information and digital officer, outlined the new components during the press conference. In its digital efforts, he said nothing has grabbed the team's attention more than the iPad.
The iPad application allows customers to tab, drag, drop and use all of the innovative features of the device, Concors said, including GPS to find the nearest Pizza Hut location.
The app presents all of the chain's menu options, which can be added to a cart, and offers the chance to see the final creation virtually before placing the order. Upon checkout, customers submit their first and last name, phone number and email address. Their personal information and their orders will then be remembered for future, one-click business.
In other news, Concors said Pizza Hut has listened to consumers about how to make its two-year-old iPhone ordering app better and users are now able to re-order a pizza through the guest pad which prevents the need to create an account.
Fans have responded favorably to the improvements, he said, with some even submitting new advertisements.
Android app launched
"It didn't stop there. We listened to our consumers who demanded an app for each of their smartphones, so we're releasing one for the Android. The functionality is similar to the iPhone, with tilting, dragging and dropping, and ease of use," Concors said. "With the iPad, iPhone and Android, we now have more points of access than any other international pizza chain and are one of the most accessible brands."
Pizza Hut anticipates a mobile 7 platform launch later this year and a completely redesigned mobile website.
Although Pizza Hut doesn't release financials, Concors said the company has been "really happy" with the results thus far, adding that customer feedback also has been overwhelmingly positive.
"We have almost 3 million downloads (on the original iPhone app) to date. They like how easy it is to use and mobile phones are on people all the time; they can just press a button and order quickly," Concors said.
Pizza Hut expects the mobile space to be the primary growth channel within the next 12-18 months because of the speed at which people are adopting the devices, their ease of use and their functionality.
"There is no need to know a phone number, you just have the app," Concors said. "If you're traveling it's easy. Also, you can take your time to put an order together and create what you want."
Concors said there will be specials created exclusively for the company's mobile customer base. The iPad, iPhone and Android apps are all live as of today.
/ Alicia has been a professional journalist for 15 years. Her work with FastCasual.com, QSRweb.com and PizzaMarketplace.com has been featured in publications around the world, including NPR, Good Morning America, Voice of Russia radio, Consumerist.com and Franchise Asia magazine.