iPad - To accept customer communications

What Pocket Waiter does

Once installed and run on any iPad (mini, Air or Pro), it sits in your restaurant, taking orders from your dine-in customers. The only thing your customers need to do is download the free Pocket Waiter iPhone app from the Apple App Store and select Dine In. Pocket Waiter then connects them to your restaurant's iPad app and quickly downloads your menu.

Once connected, your customers can then place orders from their table without requiring a waiter to be available. Your staff prepare the orders and deliver them to the table.

Getting started

Once you have installed this app onto your iPad, select Settings and enter your restaurant’s name.

Next, enter your menu options.

Finally, tell your customers that you now support Pocket Waiter.

Cost

The Pocket Waiter iPad app is free to download, set up and use with the default settings. If that gives you everything you need, the good news is that Pocket Waiter is totally FREE.

You can add premium features, such as prices on the menu and order printing, to the Pocket Waiter iPad app for a one-time cost, which is handled by Apple at the App Store. Once enabled, that’s it. There’s no ongoing cost, no subscription, no licensing and no commission.

The Pocket Waiter iPhone app your customers use is free.

Printing

You can configure Pocket Waiter to automatically print every order as it arrives or set it up so that you manually tap the print button for individual orders. You can change the printing setup at any time.

Pocket Waiter supports printing over ethernet and WiFi. Simply put any receipt printer on your network and activate the printing feature on your Pocket Waiter iPad app. Pocket Waiter will locate the printer on your network. If it finds more than one printer, choose the one you want it to use. You can print test orders and Pocket Waiter supports ESC/POS printer commands, so you can tell it whether or not to cut the paper.

Mounting your iPad

It's a good idea to mount your iPad on a stand and there are many to choose from. Ideally, you want one that's secure, looks professional and is easy to clean.

We like this one from Amazon.

Bluetooth coverage

This is usually fine but will depend to some extent on the layout of your restaurant.

Bluetooth 4 (iPhone 4S onwards) can cover up to 60 metres and Bluetooth 5 (iPhone 8 onwards) can handle up to 240 metres. However, walls and corners can restrict coverage and create dead spots.

If you have Bluetooth dead spots, Pocket Waiter can still take orders over WiFi. You don't even need an Internet connection for this. As long as you connect the Pocket Waiter iPad app to a working WiFi router, your customers can place orders.

Enabling Bluetooth and WiFi

We recommend you enable Bluetooth and WiFi at the same time. Supporting both types of connection makes it easier for your customers to use Pocket Waiter.

Remember that Bluetooth may not reach every table in larger restaurants. If some of the tables in your restaurant suffer from weak WiFi signals, you can improve coverage with WiFi boosters.

Network security settings

You do not need to make any changes to your network firewall settings. Pocket Waiter broadcasts its presence only on your WiFi network. It does not use the Internet.

Only iPhones running Pocket Waiter over Bluetooth or your WiFi network can communicate with Pocket Waiter on your iPad.