How many of us have picked up the last minute birthday cake we needed for a party, only to realize a word was misspelled, or the handwriting was atrocious?
Apparently, so many of us, that there’s an entire website solely dedicated to “cakes gone wrong.” Misspelled cakes might be a thing of the past though, for Columbus now has its first, and only in the world, cake decorating robot. But not for long.
BeeHex, a 3D printing company that’s been contracted by NASA and the U.S. Army, has installed a temporary, free, on-demand cake-writing machine at 300 S. Hamilton Rd., inside Kroger. Their pilot machine is only there for another month or so, according to BeeHex’s COO. While most customized cakes take around 3 or more days to get into your hands, this machine only takes 2-10 minutes to customize a cake exactly the way you want it.
Benjamin Feltner, COO of BeeHex, gave us the lowdown of how this robot operates: customers can grab any cake of their choice from the Kroger bakery, then they’ll slide it into the drawer of the machine. They can pick out the fonts, colors, and patterns for the cake, including any custom message of their choice. “I think that’s the best feature,” said Feltner. “My friends and family and I would write the most ridiculous thing we could on a cake, and that would be a topic of conversation for the whole night.”
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This cake robot includes hundreds of pre-made designs, too, even including a man with a mullet (people definitely used this preset on 4th of July, laughed Feltner), or a beautiful watercolor dog. “It’s just all around really fun. When people walk up to us, their first question is, ‘Can I type any message?’ They get really excited.” And, because a robot will be decorating them, there’s essentially no way for “Congratulations” to be misspelled, unless the customer misspells it while inputting it into the screen, which will hopefully not be the case considering most of the time, there’s an employee there to help.
BeeHex started selling cookie decorating machines to larger establishments, such as Cheryl’s Cookies. In 2020, everything slowed down of course, and BeeHex had the time to get more creative. They wanted to start selling these machines to grocery stores, such as Kroger, but Kroger was more interested in a full cake decorating machine instead of just cookies. They suited a machine specifically for them, and now, the first ever in the entire world (according to Feltner) is there in Gahanna.
“Customers have loved it. Especially for last minute forgotten cakes or surprise parties. It’s perfect for those occasions,” remarked Feltner. “Maybe they couldn’t find someone to decorate their cake – it fills that need, too.”
Feltner emphasized, “This particular machine is the only one in the world, and there’s only a month left to use it.” For now, that is. If you can’t get into Kroger within the month, don’t worry – their next steps are to install multiple installations in Central Ohio if Kroger decides to continue their partnership.
For anyone interested in learning more about how this cake writing robot works, here’s an informational video.
Want to read more? Check out our print publication, (614) Magazine. Learn where you can find a free copy of our new July issue here!
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