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By Kristen Bahler
November 4, 2016
Roberto Machado Noa—LightRocket via Getty Images

If your Dollar Menu addiction is eclipsed only by your disdain for long lines, here’s some good news.

Starting next year, McDonald’s customers in the U.S., U.K., Canada, France, and Australia will be able to order and pay for their food with their smartphones, via the company’s new mobile order-and-pay technology. By 2018, the technology will be available to 20,000 to 25,000 McDonald’s restaurants worldwide, McDonald’s spokesperson Becca Hary told Money.

McDonald’s is relatively late to the mobile ordering game — Starbucks, Taco Bell, and a bevy of other fast food chains launched apps that help customers avoid the register over a year ago. The Starbucks app is so popular that about 25% of the company’s customers use it to pay for their orders.

In the coming years, order-and-pay apps could help cut labor costs for McDonald’s restaurants worldwide, consultant Neil Saunders told Business Insider.

“This would be helpful to the company at a time when wage pressures are becoming a heavier burden on the cost line,” he said. “It would also give McDonald’s an opportunity to track consumer behavior and buying patterns and stimulate spending with offers and deals.”

Advertiser Disclosure

The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

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