Major League Baseball (MLB) team the Philadelphia Phillies have teamed up with food services provider Aramark to engage in what they claim is a groundbreaking trial of new technology for fans attending games at Citizens Bank Park.

Aramark is the food and beverage provider for Citizens Bank Park, along with seven other MLB ballparks. Through the trial, fans in designated sections of Citizens Bank Park will be able to use Apple Business Chat to place orders using their iPhone’s Messages app to have beverages delivered directly to their seats.

Aramark said it is the first sports concessionaire to pilot this modern mobile ordering service using Apple Business Chat, which allows fans to utilise text messaging to order and pay for menu items without downloading a special app.

Fans sitting in sections 142, 143, 144 and 145 at Citizens Bank Park will be able to purchase select beer and water brands. The pilot program is being conducted over the course of 10 games from July 20 to August 5.

“As fans’ expectations and behaviours change, Aramark continues to be on the forefront of introducing innovative, fan-friendly offerings to help transform the ballpark dining experience,” Carl Mittleman, president of Aramark’s Sports & Entertainment Division, said.

“Utilising Apple Business Chat as an ordering option is a logical next step. By doing so, we’re able to integrate an easily accessible digital technology that enables fans to seamlessly order from their mobile devices while continuing to watch the game or socialise with friends.”

The service Aramark is piloting at Citizens Bank Park also makes use of Assist, experts in automated messaging experiences, which developed the automated messaging program that walks fans through the step-by-step on-screen ordering process.

LivePerson, which specialises in connecting consumers to brands, serves as the program’s conversational commerce platform. To utilise the service, iOS 11.3 or higher and an Apple Pay account are required.

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