It seemed so far fetched as Tom Cruise peered into the future and rearranged image snippets of a crime that hadn’t happened yet and later was identified by an eye scan as he fled past an interactive sign in the Hollywood blockbuster ‘Minority Report’. But, as I am finding out these types of technological advancements are not only in development – they are being used all around us.
Touchscreen technology has actually been with us for a long time and no I’m not talking about Steve Jobs’ baby the iPad, I’m alluding to the humble bank machine. Most bank machines have touch screen terminals and, if you look up, you’ll notice a small circular hole – smile you’re on bank cam.
The next point of commonly used digital signage is fast food. McDonalds’ has interchangeable display screens which, I hate to admit, are rather eye-catching. In a similar area, Subway seems to be leading the charge with touchscreen ordering machines, chargeable loyalty cards and iPhone applications. Not only do these machines take your order, they can also process your payment and upload your reward points – no more waiting in line if you don’t have to. Speaking of this, are you familiar with the self-service terminals in your local supermarket?
Also while we’re on the subject have you had a go on Microsoft Xbox’s Kinect system or the rival Nintendo Wii? These are controller-free devices that recognise hand, feet and facial expressions – not to mention being able to judge depth and speed. Currently they are being used to serve games and entertainment.
So, the more you think about it, these types of technologies are being applied all around us and are becoming more commonplace. But this is only the very tip of the iceberg.
Development of interactive signage which include body type recognition i.e. a 20 something female walks past an interactive sign, it recognises her body type, weight, height, age and serves her the appropriate advert or promotion for her age group. Also imagine walking past a drink machine and hearing the sound of a drink opening and someone taking a nice refreshing gulp, followed by an ‘ahhhhhh’ – you’ve just triggered a motion sensor sound advert. Getting used to signs talking to us is one thing, but imagine being able to talk back to these devices.
Microsoft’s Kinect System is also being developed for television. Imagine a television system which recognises your face, knows all your favourite programmes, is hooked up to the Internet and can perform searches for you by voice command e.g. “Kinect, find out how much those shoes are that are in that Nike advert”. Various providers such as Samsung have also unveiled Smart TV‘s which behave very much like a smartphone.
No matter what your viewpoint on this, consider this from a business perspective. The way you have been communicating up until this point with consumers is set to change forever and is changing all around us. Whilst some of the innovations I’ve mentioned are in development, most are in use in certain sectors. The options that are now at your finger tips are only as limited as your imagination (or your agencies). If you’d like to find out more about various point-of-sale innovations, contact COO’EE today.
Just like Tom Cruise, we can’t run from the future forever. So let us help you embrace these new technological innovations and come join us on this exciting journey.