Chipotle Bets on Updated App to Help Chain Recover From Missteps

Hurricanes and Hacker Attack Hammer Chipotle Earnings

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. is counting on an updated mobile app to help the chain break out of its funk.

The burrito chain, battered by an unsteady comeback from a food-safety crisis, has launched a new version of its mobile app that it says will make it easier for customers to find locations and order and pay for food on their phones.

The restaurant industry is increasingly using mobile apps to boost sales and push coupons to regular customers as more people order food on their phones. Chipotle has been considered a digital laggard, but has tried to catch up as it seeks to recover from its 2015 food-safety debacle.

“The new app is just one of the steps we’re taking to improve the guest experience,” Curt Garner, the company’s chief digital officer, said in a statement.

A fresh round of negative headlines over the summer tied to rodents and norovirus have fueled pessimism about the company’s comeback in recent months. And its rollout of queso, a cheese dip added to the menu nationally in September, has been shaky, with some customers criticizing the product on social media.

Chipotle’s shares have slipped 27 percent this year.

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