May I present the WOSH? This is the most fascinating, moving, invigorating washroom idea I may have ever seen.
It's a sustainable handwashing stand.
I hear you cry, "What's the big deal?" Yes, sustainable is a thing and washing became a thing during the pandemic. But seriously, stop with this saving the Earth thing. We're talking about McDonald's here. Meat won't save the Earth.
Ah, but the WOSH has a highly creative element: A slot into which you slip your smartphone in order to keep it smart and clean.
I know, I know. It sounds odd. And yes, I should mention this invention is only available in Japanese McDonald's.
But please, watch this thing in action and wonder whether you, too, might want to avail yourself of this joy.
The WOSH reuses 98% of the water it uses. The makers say that "a pleasing ring of light appears when you start washing your hands, intuitively counting down the recommended 30 seconds. Naturally form proper hygiene habits."
Then there's the promise of 99.9% sterilization for your phone, thanks to deep ultraviolet light.
And goodness, you're surely aware that your smartphone is likely one of the filthiest items in your regular daily life.
But additional goodness, doesn't this seem like a fine idea?
What a wonderfully thoughtful way to offer your customers something more than they might expect.
McDonald's has been on something of a technological surge lately. If these WOSH's were installed in US McDonald's, might they become a genuine attraction for customers?
Buy a burger and get a disinfected phone for free!
Oh, I fear not every American McDonald's customer may appreciate this. How can this phone disinfector possibly be kept clean when everything around it isn't? And how could McDonald's possibly maintain it when it can't even keep the ice cream machines working?
Of course, fast food brands in America currently feel quite ambivalent about having customers inside their restaurants at all. Staffing has been a problem. The pandemic helped drive-thru and delivery become a vast opportunity. So why bother using up so much real estate for relatively low returns?
Then again, perhaps it's never wise to underestimate the human fascination with the unexpected.
Why, McDonald's in the US is already charging more for its food, so perhaps it can drift upscale and offer delightful little touches -- even in its restrooms.