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Is Domino's Going Too Far by GPS-Tracking Its Customers?

In the name of freshness, Domino’s customers who order pizza for pickup with a smartphone will be able to opt to allow Domino’s to track their location so that Domino’s can begin to prepare the customers’ pizzas when they are near.
Photo via Flickr user Mr. Blue MauMau

How great is it that we live in a world where pizza is just a touch of a button away? That you can have a cheesy, steaming hot pie delivered right to you even in early hours of the morning—maybe even via a car with a built-in oven—shows just how far we've come as a species.

And while one can impatiently track the current status of one's pizza order online, what if the tables were turned, and the pizza could track you? In Australia, we are about to enter the pizza surveillance state: soon, the Big Brother known as Domino's will track the location of its in-store pick-up customers so that pizzas are delivered hot n' ready when customers arrive.

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"Time is the enemy of food," Don Meij, the CEO of Domino's Australia said at a news conference. "The longer it sits on the rack, the lower the quality of that pizza."

READ MORE: Domino's Plans to Unleash These Pizza Delivery Robots on the Streets of Brisbane

In the name of freshness, Domino's customers who order pizza for pickup with a smartphone will be able to opt to allow Domino's to track their location so that Domino's can begin to prepare the customers' pizzas when they are near. Customers can specify whether they are driving in a car, riding a bike, or walking to pick up their pie so that Domino's knows exactly when to throw pizzas in the oven.

Domino's says that customers are only tracked during the duration of the ordering process, but who knows how far our pizza overlords will go. Domino's Australia is the biggest Domino's franchise outside of the US, where it is the second-biggest pizza chain after Pizza Hut. Over the last ten years, the value of Domino's stock has increased more than seventeenfold, according to Bloomberg, and the company is testing pizza delivery robots and super-charged ovens. Over at the labs of their arch-nemesis, Pizza Hut, the chefs have created unspeakable pizzabominations like cheeseburger-and-hot-dog-crust pizza. Only time will tell what sacrifices will be made next in the name of pizza progress.

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But for Australians, the choice to allow Domino's to track their location is one they will have to make willingly for now. Is handing over your location to Domino's so that they can track your every move on the way to the store worth a perfectly hot pizza? Only Australians can make that decision, but for some pizza lovers, the choice will be clear—pizza over privacy.