Blog: February 2012
Is that a QR code in your pocket, or do you just want to tell the world where you last had sex?Turns out the answer could be “both.”The scannable codes have been popping up on (of all things) condom wrappers—to enable users to post the location of their sexual activity online.No, it’s not a check-in app for orgy-goers (VCs take note—that opportunity may still be available). It’s part of an effort by the Seattle-area chapter of Planned Parenthood to hook up with members of the social-media generation.
Oxfam's Shelflife links goods with past using QR CodesThe Shelflife app lets everyday things tell talesContinue reading the main storyRelated Stories
Oxfam is trying out a mobile phone scheme called Shelflife that lets customers find out the stories behind second-hand goods it sells.A Shelflife phone app links stories and pictures provided by donors to tags attached to the goods.Browsers in Oxfam shops can scan the tags using the app to find out about an individual item's past.The charity believes it can sell things more easily when they have stories attached to them."Someone might donate a record and add that it was the song that they danced to at their wedding to its tag," said Oxfam's Emma Joy."We hope the pilot will prove that items with stories are more valuable and establish the monetary value of a story," she said.'Social museum'Shelflife uses technology developed for a project called Tales of Things and Electronic Memory (Totem), a collaboration of academics at five UK universities. Totem has built a database of more than 6,000 objects which have been linked to their stories with tags.Each Totem object has its own Twitter account, and tweets are sent out automatically to an object's "followers" every time its tag is scanned or new information is added to its story."We want to make every Oxfam shop into an interactive social museum," said Andrew Hudson-Smith, director of the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London and a contributor to the Totem project."Second-hand goods are essentially meaningless, but when they are tagged we give them meaning," he said.The Shelflife system uses QR Codes - black and white patterns designed to be read easily by mobile phones - printed on tags. The Totem project has supplied Oxfam with 10,000 tags with unique QR Codes for the Shelflife trial.Oxfam customers use the Shelflife iPhone app - a similar Android app is in the works - to read the QR Codes and find out about an item or add to its history.Oxfam is trying out Shelflife at 10 shops around Manchester, and the charity hopes to extend it to all of its shops if, as Oxfam expects, the pilot scheme shows that adding stories to them makes them more valuable.Shelflife will also be used to add stories to new products that Oxfam sells in its shops.
Graffiti. Tech. Nature. iris Amsterdam with GreenGraffiti created these ice QR codes before the canals melted in Amsterdam. The ice was melting, so came an opportune time to remind people about climate change. The environmentally-friendly QR codes (made from sticky sand) placed on Amsterdam’s canals contained a link to the WWF site which had info on the melting ice caps. Once temperatures warmed up and the ice started melting, the message was clear. There was no media spend, and there are no laws against printing on ice. All very environmentally friendly.
Glamour magazine has set up a shoppable wall in New York that's reminiscent of Tesco's virtual supermarket in a South Korea subway station last summer and Procter & Gamble's similar effort in Prague last fall.Much like its overseas predecessors, Glamour's shoppable wall lets consumers scan 2-D barcodes with an app on their phone to buy real products for home delivery.The Glamour Apothecary Wall stemmed directly from Tesco's effort. "We thought 'How can we bring that here?'" said Bill Wackermann, exec VP-publishing director of Glamour, part of Conde Nast. "We're not about supermarkets, but we are about beauty products."The wall is stocked with items from Unilever , C.O. Bigelow, Johnson & Johnson , John Frieda, Elizabeth Arden, Clearasil and Versace. "Some of these accounts are longstanding advertising partners of Glamour, people that are willing to take an innovative step forward," Mr. Wackermann said.Glamour is again using SnapTags from SpyderLynk as its 2-D barcode provider. The magazine usedFacebook-enabled SnapTags in its September issue and SnapTags set up for e-commerce in its March issue. Separately, it has just introduced a redesign meant to help ad-page sales and newsstand traction.The wall, across from the Standard Hotel in Manhattan's Meatpacking District, will be up through next Tuesday.
Ken Livingstone’s campaign is using targeted direct mail campaigning today utilising interactive smart phone technology to draw attention to Ken’s “Fare Deal”, with thousands of print materials being delivered to households in every parliamentary constituency across the capital.
The card, personalised by first name and street, informs recipients that ‘On 7 October 2012 one politician will save residents on xxxx street £1000.’ By scanning the QR code on the leaflet they are then taken directly to a video message from Ken Livingstone, pledging to deliver his Fare Deal plan and promising he will resign if he has not introduced a 7% cut to fares by 7 October 2012. If the user doesn’t have a smart-phone they can text 66007 with the word “Who” to find out.
The leaflet is the latest in a series of innovations from the Livingstone campaign, which the party seem to be using as a test-bed for new campaign techniques.
We love this use of QR codes – This is how they should be used – not just slapped on some printed matter with no call to action or benefit to client.
Cosmetics trendsetter Urban Decay strives for the “Wow!” with its annual Book of Shadows (BOS)eye shadow collection. This year, its BOS4 comes complete with a portable speaker for mp3 players and three “Look” cards printed with QR codes which users can scan to view tutorial videos, a first in the cosmetics industry.
Urban Decay added QR codes to what it calls a "Look" card-included in its latest Book of Shadows-so cosmetic buyers could see videos that show how to apply the eye shadows.
Article Via Packaging Digest
PayPal is using smartphone-crazy Singapore to trial an interesting initiative which allows phone owners to buy goods on the go using a QR code reader application.
The experiment is taking place at 15 stations on the country’s metro system (SMRT) where the eBay-owned payment company is showcasing gifts from eight retailers at reduced prices for Valentine’s Day, as AllThingsD reports.
Singapore’s underground is one of the few that boasts full mobile and data coverage while the country also has city-wide free WiFi, which are key to this test. To get involved in the trial, smartphone owners must first download the PayPal QR code reader which allows them to scan products. Once scanned, items can be purchased by logging into PayPal (of course) or by providing credit cards details.
Mobile payments are growing rapidly in the US, however Asia remains largely untouched for a number of reasons. Not only are smartphones still a growing niche in many parts of the reason, but credit card ownership — and even bank account usage — is low too.
Singapore is a standout case in Southeast Asia, and it was once the capital of iOS devices; boasting more per person than anywhere else in the world. The surge of Apple worldwide may have seen it lose the record, but nonetheless smartphone usage remains high there and it has high levels of Internet connectivity and fast speeds to boot.
Singapore has been the setting for trials around contactless payments, NFC-based commerce and other such pilots, and we’ll be keeping an eye on this QR code trial with interest.
John Currie is walking the streets of Toronto these days, wearing a 1930s style sandwich board as he desperately looks for work.
But his message is every bit 2012. The unemployed motion graphics producer’s message is embedded in a Quick Response Code and a quick scan will send you to his website which features his 2012 demo reel.
“This is a one-man marketing initiative. I’m very unhappily unemployed and have been for about a year,” he said Wednesday standing out in front of the Toronto Star building at One Yonge St.
The 42-year-old Currie (twitter handle @thatQRcodeguy) promised himself that if he was still without a job by January 2012 he would he would get the word, or this case a QR code, on the street.
“I make no demands. I don’t tell people please scan me or volunteer information. It’s just sort of a passive way . . . of trying meet and greet people and hopefully get them to scan and see what I have to offer,” he said.
Currie has been creating animated graphics for video or film for about 20 years. He is looking for work in either marketing or advertising, “anywhere there is a need for animation.”
“It has been a bit of an uphill battle because most people have a tendency to look away. But I have had some attention in the last few days,” he said.