About a year or so ago (in an outdated blog) we suggested that with the advent of mobiles having been developed to scan headstones by a Japanese company, it surely would not be long before buildings and landmarks would have some sort of bar code stuck to their very walls so that a passerby could wander up to it and discover what the comany did etc. According to TechCrunch this is now a matter of history:
What if every store had a bar-code sticker on its window so that you could pull out your iPhone, wave it in front of the bar code and get all sorts of information about that business—the telephone number, photos, customer reviews? Starting on Monday, you’ll be able to do that at up to 190,000 local businesses throughout the U.S.
See, how easy it was? Just by sticking one of these:
on to the window or external surface of a local museum, historic building and suddenly visitors get to grips with relvant info before they even enter the place.
Of course it does require a rather big hitter to get something like this off the ground in some sort of meaningful and exapnisve way, which is why Google has stepped up to the mark.
Naturally, businesses are the guinea pigs since they can often gauge customers immediate reactions to the service via discounts, sales etc as they decide to enter or not. However, the travel industry has a serious potential opportunity on their hands here as tourists will no longer be restricted to planning in advance, waiting for places to open, phoning around in foreign places. Other advantages just at a glance to this system include:
- instant access to information
- updated news regularly
- reserving places on the go
- buying/ordering what you see
- no books, pamphlets cluttering pockets
The list is endless and considering this is only the start of a huge experiment across the US it will no doubt be successful. It puts the consumer more in the driving seat rather than simply relying on third parties to provide the facts and figures.
Mobile technology is raging ahead – much to the benefit of tourist-enabled techies.