Several months ago, I did something for the first time: I ordered pizza online. Ever since then, whenever I’ve ordered from Domino’s, I’ve done it through the web. There are a number of reasons for that, but the main one is that you can order at your own pace and in a convenient location. I’ve had numerous food orders wrongly interpreted at various different outlets (not just Domino’s) when I’ve ordered via speech, but I’ve always been happy with the results of ordering online. This is because, thanks to the way that Domino’s organises its website, every last detail of a pizza can be customised and sent off to the store, with no room for a bad interpretation, because you haven’t spoken to anyone.
I generally order food around lunchtime or in the early evening, and normally when I’m out somewhere. I’m not necessarily next to a PC, which normally leaves two options: go to the store, or call in an order. Neither of these methods have the aforementioned advantages of online ordering – but, fortunately, there’s now a third: mobile apps.
In February, iPhone.AppStorm covered some top notch food ordering apps for iPhone (since then, Domino’s has released an iPad app which is fantastic!), some of which I’ve used myself and can definitely recommend. Unfortunately, and I’m not going to lie to you, Android doesn’t have the same catalogue size as iOS, but, they do have two apps from pizza chains which we’re going to look at today.
Domino’s Pizza (United Kingdom)
Domino’s is one of my favourite food outlets, and, as I said in my intro, I’ve been placing my orders online. The experience is generally superb, and even offers an (admittedly dubious) “tracker” to let you follow your pizza from preparation to delivery. The app has all the same options as the website, allowing you to pick out pizzas and customise them with your own toppings, sauces and cheeses. Fortunately, all the meal deals that Domino’s offers are available in the app too, so you’re not going to lose any money by ordering this way.
While the app stocks the entire Domino’s catalogue, the app also provides a “pizza slot machine” that will randomise the configuration to get a new option. This is similar to the create-your-own process, which allows you to take a regular pizza base and choose all your pizza toppings. The process is surprisingly simple and is well optimised for use on a smaller screen.
I haven’t been able to experience this myself, but the Domino’s Pizza app has one very intriguing feature: “Simply pop your pizza in the oven and blow the steam off the screen for your chance to win money off your next order.”
Pizza Hut (United States)
The other option if you want to order pizza on Android is to do so from Pizza Hut, although you’re going to need to be a US resident to use this app.
Pizza Hut’s app is very much like its English-based, Domino’s equivalent. Pizzas can be built from scratch, with your own choice of toppings right from within the app itself. However, while Domino’s restrict its customisation to just pizzas, Pizza Hut also offers this for their other products, such as choosing a flavour for wings. As you build up your food, an image previews your product in a similar fashion to what is also available in the Domino’s app.
Pizza Hut also boasts the ability to save your orders so they can easily be reordered at a later date, saving precious time performing all the necessary customisations on a small screen. Additionally, you can save your card information to the app to speed up ordering, meaning that your future cravings will be much simpler to satisfy.
Because this app is only available in the US, I haven’t had a chance to try it out, although those that did reported it as being animated, fluid and seemingly well-polished.
It is unfortunate that Android does not share the same catalogue for food ordering apps as iOS, as the idea of being able to order a very specific meal right from your phone is great. At least if you live in the UK or US there is one major player whose app you can use.
There are some other food ordering apps available on Android, although not necessarily pizza-based. GrubHub offers a plethora of delivery options for 19 cities in the US. Should you happen to reside in New York, San Francisco, Washington DC, Chicago or one of a handful of other major cities, you might be interested in Seamless Food Delivery which offers a similar service to GrubHub.
For us folk in the UK, aside from Domino’s, I couldn’t find any good apps similar to Seamless or GrubHub. Just-Eat has an Android app in the works (well, okay, it’s a game and has nothing to do with actually ordering food, but still), with a mobile website to use in the meantime.
Do you order food online? Have you tried out one of the four apps we’ve mentioned today? Share your experiences in the comments below!