zomato

Zomato has launched a separate app called Zomato Order for its food ordering service on iOS and Android. Currently available for ordering only in the Delhi-NCR region, Zomato has plans to introduce this service in Bangalore, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Pune along with an app for Windows Phone in the future.

Restaurants must explicitly accept order to confirm it

The app will let a user order food by clicking on restaurants or searching. The app features an acceptance rate for restaurants, which Zomato says, is the percentage of times that restaurant has accepted orders. When an order is made through the app, the restaurant has to explicitly accept the order for it to be confirmed. This, Zomato says, is to ensure that the restaurant is able to deliver the order.

COD only, online payments coming soon

However, restaurants can still decline the orders in case of availability issues or are nearing closing times, Zomato adds. If a user does not get a response of the order being accepted, they should order from a different restaurant, it says. The service has only cash on delivery payments at the moment with online payments coming soon.

Why a new app?

Zomato will not charge users for the service, but restaurants could still levy a delivery fee, based on their policy. It says that it split up from its main app to give both functionalities (restaurant discovery and food ordering) independent attention while updating either as required. Instead of pushing updates to a single app, Zomato says that it will be able to keep both the apps lightweight especially for regions where food ordering is not yet available.

Late last month, Zomato issued an app update for iOS and Android with a new interface, Apple Watch support and online food ordering. Then, users could click on the “+” on the home screen to order food online. On clicking “+”, the user would see a host of restaurants which were taking online orders, and could be filtered by the “nearby” filter.

MaplePOS acquisition and $50 million funding

In the same month, Zomato acquired cloud-based restaurant point-of-sale (POS) product MaplePOS (renamed ZomatoBase) for an undisclosed amount. The company will work on integrating MaplePOS’s services with Zomato over the next few months, after which the service will be available to restaurant businesses from September. It also raised funding worth $50 million from InfoEdge and other investors in the same time frame. According to InfoEdge, it will continue to hold 50.1% stake in Zomato against its aggregate investment amount of Rs 4.84 billion (~$77.5 million).

In January this year, founder and CEO of Zomato, Deepinder Goyal, had held a concall to discuss Zomato’s plans. For restaurants, Goyal had said that, “We give them a dashboard, where they can track the number of page views they get on Zomato, they can track the number of calls being made through Zomato, they can check the number of map views they got, the number of menu views they got. They can actually take a lot of metrics. Overall, I think we are able to give them a fair estimate of the ROI that we drive to them.”

Image Credit: Zomato.xxx