Despite the fact that McDonald’s makes a lot of effort to eliminate human interaction in the food ordering process, it appears that the automated order system has some problems. The most recent problem discovered by a customer provides the possibility of ordering free hamburgers.
In Australia, McDonald’s has an almost permanent offer to sell hamburgers for $1 a piece. However, the automated ordering system allows the customer to customize the order, regardless if its on sale or not. So, if you remove the meat out of every burger you order, the price gets reduced by $1.1, so for every burger without meat you also get a credit for $10 cents. If you add 10 burgers without the meat you can also add one that includes meat and it will be completely free.
Basically, the negative price of the burgers without the meat covers the cost of a normal hamburger. This happens because automated systems does some math when you add food to your order. Even when you select them the price is displayed correctly, when you arrive in the checkout area of the order you get access to discounts.
McDonald’s will surely fix this problem in the future and we’re also sure that in the future McDonald’s will pay more attention to testing the software before allowing customers to order.