By 2015, the fiberglass tables and industrial steel chairs will be replaced by wooden tables and comfortable faux leather chairs. The neon-yellow, bright-red interiors will give way to muted oranges, yellows and even subtle greens.
The evolution to a more Starbucks-like environment is partially due to the fact that customers feel comfortable there. They can bring their laptops, sign on to free Wi-Fi and spend an afternoon hanging out -- unlike the current McDonald's restaurants where people go to get their meal quickly, sometimes without even leaving their car.
"McDonald's has to change with the times," says Jim Carras, senior vice president of domestic restaurant development for the giant chain. "And we have to do so faster than we ever have before."