Thursday, August 31, 2006

Cell Phones Help With Traffic Jams

From PhysOrg Cell phones used to report traffic jams

Engineers have developed a system for taking anonymous cell-phone location
information and turning it into an illuminated traffic map that identifies congestion in real time.

The system takes advantage of the steady stream of positioning cues--untraced signals all cell phones produce, whether in use or not, as they seek towers with the strongest signals. It is the first traffic-solution technology that monitors patterns on rural roads and city streets as easily as on highways.

Unlike sensors and other equipment along major freeways that is expensive and takes years to deploy, our system takes advantage of existing cellular networks in which wireless carriers have already invested billions of dollars," said National Science Foundation (NSF) awardee and IntelliOne CEO Ron Herman

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

TextMarks Could Be Great Mobile Marketing Player

You have to try this out just to see how easy mobile marketing can be.

TextMarks is trying to make SMS publishing easy and mainstream.

I first heard about TextMarks from Russell Buckley at MobHappy

After checking this service out, I realized these guys could be a real player in the mobile marketing space quickly.

They allow you to use their short code (41411) for free, and you create your own desired keyword for advertising. You can see if your desired keyword is available immediately.

To try their service click here or send an text to 41411 and use keyword "PRIMATE".

A TextMark is a keyword for an SMS you select that people can text message to 41411 to receive a custom response from you.

Let them be directed to a webpage, or specific text (that can be continuously changed).

Not only do I think this service will be a hit for advertisers and people that want to communicate effectively with SMS, I plan on using it to promote an upcoming product.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Barcode Authentication By Mobile

Star Online has a story Barcode authentication for your mobile

Macro Kiosk Bhd's newly launched SMS barcode authentication system, dubbed Mobile Authentication Services (MAS), allows mobile phones to be used as a tool to authenticate online ticket purchases as well as collect rewards points.

MAS, which combines compact two-dimensional (2D) barcode and GSM picture technologies, converts text or picture messages into a 2D barcode that can be transmitted to the mobile phone via SMS or WAP push

The barcode can then be used as an electronic ticket or boarding pass for airlines, cinemas, transportation services, hotels and entertainment organisers, said Macro Kiosk chief executive officer, Kenny Goh.

“The user just needs to scan the barcode on a special scanner at the merchant's premises to confirm that he has a ticket before entering,” he said.

Goh added that the system is secure as each barcode is unique and there will be “only one available in the whole world at any one time.” Once a user has used a barcode, it will no longer be valid

Coke Uses QR Codes For Mobile Marketing

Helen Keegan at Musings explains how Coca Cola is using QR codes for a mobile marketing and m-commerce.

Coca Cola uses the mobile phone as a loyalty point system for their Cmode mobile-enabled drinks vending machines in Japan. consumers can use NFC (near field communication) or a QR code generated by an application installed on their phone to purchase drinks at Cmode vending machines.

For each purchase, consumers earn loyalty points which are stored on their mobile phone. As the number of loyalty points increases, the consumer's loyalty ranking 'levels up' and the number of loyalty points earned per drink purchased also increases.

Consumers can redeem loyalty points as free drinks at a vending machine, or on digital content such as screensavers and wallpapers at the Coca Cola mobile site

Monday, August 28, 2006

Carnival Of The Mobilists #42

MobileActive hosts this week's Carnival of the Mobilists

This week 15 of the best mobile blog spots are posted in one site for easy reading.
Each week I see a new mobile blogger name to keep an eye on.

My Google Offers QR Codes post was the post of the week.

It's nice to see people in the mobile space recognize the affect this could have on Physical World Connection.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Google And China Mobile To Offer Physical World Connection With QRCodes

This is NOT what any of the physical world connection companies, that are offering a 2d code, want to see.

China Mobile, Google, Nokia and a pre-installed QRcode reader. That sounds like physical world connection to me. The world's largest wireless carrier, the biggest search engine and the biggest mobile phone manufacturer.

While the PWC guys are trying to convince wireless carriers how much ARPU (avg rev per user) that can generate with 2d codes, and trying to get phone manuf to preinstall on the phone, Google is doing it for them.

While mobile marketing companies are still pitching 2d codes for "text-to-win" and other advertising uses, they neglected the biggest market of them all, the consumer.

Did you buy your first TV because you wanted to watch advertisements? Which came first, the TV show or the TV ad? Something the PWC might think about.

This is how Google will dominate the physical world connection and mobile search/info space overnight.

Google would just need to add a QRcode creator site, to one of it's applications/menus, and just about ANYTHING online or in the physical world could be connected using a mobile phone.

It's pretty clear 2d codes will/are being adopted long before a 1d code (barcode).

From PacificEpoch China Mobile partners with Google and QRcode

China Mobile held a meeting with 20 service providers (SPs) as well as handset maker Nokia on August 18 to set a blueprint for 3G services, reports The Beijing News.

According to the report, Nokia will pre-install China Mobile's mobile instant messaging client Femoo and Google's mobile search services on some customized Nokia handsets. According to recent rumors, China Mobile has also partnered with Google for mobile search services.

China Mobile's focus for 3G will include mobile TV, mobile music and its bar code e-commerce service QRcode. China Mobile subsidiary company ASPire Technologies is handling the QRcode service.

What I envision is Google setting up "Google Code", where anyone can create a QRcode for anything (business card, poster, website, menu, etc) It costs Google peanuts to offer this, but by allowing people to create these codes for free, they are creating the "standard" for physical world connection.

This free code creating service by Google could extend to mobile coupons, mobile tickets, and anything that can be scanned by a mobile phone and/or an in-store scanning device.

Knowing that Nokia, the largest phone manufacturer in the world is putting this specific QRcode reader on the phone, both service providers, users, and advertisers will adopt "Google Code".

Next, Google starts a "cost-per-scan" advertising service. Advertisers pay Google everytime a user scans a QRcode with their mobile phone. This certainly reduce clickfraud, and it would also allow Google to create ANOTHER advertising business.

This could be very troubling for some of the physical world connection companies. If Google uses China Mobile's QRcode application from Aspire, and they penetrate the Chinese market (the biggest), why bother to use anyone else?

Fear not PWC cos, there's a way to get your technology adopted and it doesn't have to involve Google, it will take a little Vision though.

Does anyone know what Microsoft is doing?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

RFID, NFC And Lots Of Mobile Applications

Using your mobile phone as a universal remote control is becoming more of a reality than a concept.

MIT's Technology Review has a good article titled Your Digital Wallet

The technology inside smart cards and highway toll-taking systems is now making its way into cell phones. And, within a year or two, it could be changing how many of us get information and do business.

Near-field communications (NFC) combines two established technologies: radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, which are tiny chips with built-in radios, and wireless readers that pick up signals from the radios.

Near-field technology uses RFID tags with a range of about four centimeters, meaning a person would need to hold a cell phone quite close to a reader, in much the same way that barcode scanners work.

With NFC technology, phones could become like mobile wallets, yet with the added ability to swap addresses and share photos. People could also use the technology to download movie trailers from a movie poster, or to get detailed product information in the midst of shopping.

Deutsche Bahn Uses Barcodes For Tickets

Deutsche Bahn offers Tickets By Mobile

(Berlin, 24 August 2006) immediately customers of the German course AG tickets can buy by mobile phone. The desired ticket will transfer by Multimedia Messaging service (MMS) to mobile phone.

The customer selects itself the desired train connection at the mobile telephone, selects payment means - credit card or Lastschriftverfahren - and sends its desire with or without reservation until at the latest ten minutes before the departure of the course to the course.

Within fewer minutes the data are set by MMS. The Handy display becomes the ticket, which the course companion with the scanner of its mobile terminal examines.

CBS Offers BlueTooth Downloads

I can't help but wonder, could this be a way around using mobile marketing companies?

Will existing ad agencies incorporate this application into their current marketing efforts.

From MocoNews CBS promote shows through Bluetooth downloads

CBS is starting a trial in New York City, installing five interactive posters in Grand Central terminal, which will allow users to download video clips on their mobile phones, using Bluetooth.

These half minte clips will be scenes from one of the CBS’ four new prime-time programs — “Shark,” “Smith,” “Jericho” and “The Class” — as well as its hit show “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.” A viewer can later delete the clip, or save it and pass it along.

CBS is using the MobiZone technology developed by French firm Kameleon Media for this campaign.

Outside of video clips, what other innovative products or services should they provide? By adding a Bluetooth function, you're leveraging your advertising.

If I was CBS and wanted to start a direct interraction with a mobile phone user, there are a few things I would offer.

Where I see the big demand is with a Maxim or Playboy poster. Why haven't these guys thought of this?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

RFID Physical World Connection From Nokia

One of the concerns I have with physical world connection being adopted is, what will the hyperlink of choice be first?

Will it be a 2d code, 1d code or RFID tag?

Looks like RFID tags could leapfrog 2d codes as the preferred physical world hyperlink.

Mobile ticketing that uses RFID phones

Manchester City will become the first football club in England to offer entry to its stadium using radio frequency-enabled (RF) mobile phones when it plays Arsenal this weekend.

The club has provided a small group of volunteers with near-field communication phones with embedded RF chips, and will make them generally available at Christmas.

Fans can use the phones to download tickets, open turnstiles when they pass the device over the reader, purchase merchandise and store electronic money.

Fans can already enter the ground using RFID smartcards. Those wanting to take advantage of the mobile service will have to upgrade their phones to an RF-enabled Nokia device supplied by Man City

Fans can use the phones to download tickets, open turnstiles when they pass the device over the reader, purchase merchandise and store electronic money.

Won't these applications provide greater value than price comparison?

What Would You Do If You Were A Mobile Marketing Agency?

Is this the catalyst that kickstarts physical world connection with a 1d code (barcode)?

Anyone that has ever tried to take a closeup picture with their cameraphone will appreciate this device.

From MobileMag Cameraphones get clear pics

Developed by Kenko Digital of Japan and marketed by the folks at Sunphoto, a Korean retailer that is better known for their high-end camera peripherals, the close-up filter doesn't look like much (and will likely be priced accordingly).

This "close-up filter", ensures the clearest photo possible.

If you were talking to the mobile marketing companies, what kind of creative ideas would you offer that would turn this (annoying, easy to lose, who will use it) tool into THE device that could jumpstart barcode scanning and PWC?

It will take more than "text to win" thinking to be a good mobile marketing agency.

Wanna know what these guys would do with this tool?

Have the PWC companies even considered using a macro lens as a promotional tool?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

TheLightAgency Uses Physical World Connection

This is innovative mobile marketing from TheLightAgency and is what will separate them from the crowded mobile marketing pack.

They have several new applications of M BAR Go and testing now. Take a look at their client list.

This is also how mobile marketing companies should be using physical world connection to help brands capture this new medium.

Add TheLightAgency to the mobile marketing list.

What a great idea by ShopScanSave . Just by sending a text message (JOIN to 62111), you will receive a barcode on your mobile to be scanned at the Jacksons stores.

What is creative here is that instead of going to one brand at a time for a mobile marketing campaign, ShopScanSave went to a company that has ALL of the leading brands under their roof, in many locations, and created one big campaign .

Look for more stores to do the same thing. Think of how the stores AND brands could launch other mobile marketing campaigns from this. This sure beats the "Text To Win" mentalityfrom mobile marketers.

SHOP SCAN SAVE club members receive weekly offers from leading brand owners such as Unilever, Masterfoods, P&G and News Group International. The offers are received via text message or, for owners of newer phone models, as an MMS. There are no charges associated with receiving the club text messages or utilising the service.

See the TV Ad

ClickToScan A Great Mobile Application

One of the "things I would really like" is a camera phone application that can function like electronic Post-Its.

See something of interest, take picture using mobile, and send to central location to review, email, copy or fax later.

Technology powered by RealEyes3D, a physical world connection player.

ClickToScan is just that app.

Use your camera phone or digital camera to:

-scan, copy, fax and email paper documents
-create and send mobile PDF's

It was simple to set up. Provide your email and phone number of your cell phone to register (company assured me they wouldn't sell or distribute this data without permission).

Take a picture, send image using MMS, or email to It's simple.

Want a black and white scan?

Login into your account and see all of your images and the options.

Why is it better than your wireless carrier's picture service? I use Sprint and just the work that's involved to login into my account deters me. ClickToScan offers more options for your pictures too.

Let me know your thoughts.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Amex Introduces Physical World Connection

While this doesn't offer scanning a barcode and connecting directly to the Internet, it does give every piece of luggage an electronic identifier.

By having people type in the barcode number on a website, versus scanning, the application can be used by anyone.

Maybe this should be a wake-up call to the physical world connection players.

American Express offers a new physical world connection application that will come in handy with the new Transportation Security laws.

Insurance provider American Express (Amex) has advised its customers to use a new technology option called i-Trak to help protect their luggage.

Customers can attach i-Trak labels, which carry a personal barcode, to their luggage, enabling people who find the bags to track the owners using the internet, text or an airline's telex system.

The Unique I-D Code makes the item (phones, cameras, laptops, passports) identifiable to you.

The Finder can contact you by logging on to the Internet, sending an Email, or phoning the 24 hour call centre

If your item is found by an Airline, they can contact you via their internal Telex system

Physical World Connection For Prescriptions

First prescription bottles were using 2d codes for authentification, now the actual prescription will use a 2d code to be linked to an electronic network.

2d code readers and generating companies will soon be in high demand for the numerous applications they will offer.

From e-health Barcodes on prescriptions

The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety in Northern Ireland has announced it has signed a £6.8m contract with Hewlett Packard to provide it with bar-coded prescriptions in an effort to counter fraud.

The new Electronic Prescribing and Eligibility System (EPES) will be rolled out over the next two years. Paper prescriptions will be printed with a two-dimensional barcode at the GP's surgery that encodes all of the information. The prescription itself will be logged in a database.

When the script is presented at a pharmacy, the barcode will be scanned, capturing all of the information written on the prescription, and this will be compared against the electronic record. Payment to the pharmacy will then be made from the electronic, not the paper record.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Mobile Commerce Versus Mobile Content

Which will be bigger.

Something for the physical world connection players to think about.

What would you like your physical world hyperlink to do?

I hope more than compare prices.

Great find Mobile Life

Thursday, August 17, 2006

What Does Google Do With Google Coupons?

It looks like Google is one step closer to being the one stop shop for all forms and mediums involving advertising.

With a little help from technology, Google could become a mobile marketing powerhouse.

First Google needs to build an option on the Google menu for "COUPONS" and the owner of that coupon would pay Google for every coupon printed from a "coupon search". A coupon is just a different type of keyword with a barcode.

I call it Pay-Per-Coupon

The user, after finding the coupon he wants, inputs his mobile number and coupon (2d code or 1d code/barcode) is sent to the phone for in store scanning. Google then builds a database of numbers for their mobile marketing platform.

Google is just starting to work with coupons online.

As soon as 1d code (barcode) can be sent via MMS, I see Google owning the mobile couponing space.

In the mean time, I see them buying a 2d code application company and being "the" mobile marketing company of choice.

Virgin Uses ActiveMedia For Mobile Couponing

Two very innovative companies, Flytxt and Virgin Mobile, could kick start the mobile couponing industry.

From TelephonyWorld ActiveMedia launches mobile ticketing with Virgin Mobile

Mobile ticketing and loyalty specialist ActiveMedia Technology today launched new mobile ticketing software set to reduce the cost of implementing mobile ticketing by more than two thirds naming Virgin Mobile as its first customer.

The unique, patent pending, bar code ticket delivery, management and redemption platform delivers secure barcoded tickets to mobile phones which can be read by off-the-shelf, hand held web cam, rather than traditional costly bespoke terminals.

Once scanned, information from the barcode is passed from the web cam to a PC, handheld device or retail Epos system where it is authenticated by ActiveMedia's RAPOS(tm) (redemption at point of sale) software.

Flytxt , Virgin Mobile's mobile marketing partner endorsed ActiveMedia's hand held scanner solution as part of the overall mobile ticketing campaign.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Google Acquires Physical World Connection Neven Vision

Google buying a PWC player Neven Vision isn't a suprise. I knew they were looking at their technology a while ago. I think you will see a rush now for some of the other players on the physical world connection list .

This is nice to see. Dr Neven and Alex Cory are great guys. Google is getting some forward thinking players. It also is saying that the race for physical world connection is heating up.

Neven was listed as one of the wireless companies to watch in 2006, and they have already landed major brands for mobile marketing

From C/Net Google "snaps" up Neven Vision

According to Google's blog, the search giant has bought Neven Vision, a small Santa Monica-based company that specializes in object and facial recognition technology.

Neven's technology is already being used more broadly. The company sells the technology for mobile marketing purposes in an application called iScout.

I took some pics of Neven's application at CTIA

It's possible with object and facial recognition software that can match images with those scanned into an Internet-connected database. A match can trigger a range of possible results, including promotions, ring tones, pricing, maps and search results.

I expect Yahoo to announce something soon that will enable them to become a mobile markting powerhouse

NTT DoCoMo has already been adopted by the world's leading mobile communications company.

Facial recognition software developed by Neven Vision will run on the types of microprocessors found in mobile phones.

In this way, Google could easily use this software to improve local search and advertising from cell phones, for example

Who's next on the shopping list?

There's one company I expect to be courted shortly.

I have to think Jeff Reed and what he calls his "visual Google" are the next likely target. There's a reason they just partnered with these guys .

While Neven Vision is great at reading biometric and objects, I think the 2d code will be the next "big thing" for mobile search, mobile info and mobile marketing.

Any company that has a 2d code reading software application for the mobile phone is a potential target right now in my opinion.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

2D Codes Coming To Taiwan

Wireless carriers will soon realize the 2d code, and other physical world hyperlinks, are their answer to increased Avg Rev Per User (ARPU).

When they do, both brands and phone manufacturers will be looking at the best solution for this industry. You can find them here

From DigiTimes Mobile service providers support physical world connection

Far EasTone Telecommunications (FET) and Chunghwa Telecom (CHT), two of the top three operators of mobile communication services in Taiwan, are actively promoting Quick Response (QR) Code (a two-dimensional bar code) by offering free downloads of QR Code software onto GPRS or 3G camera phones, according to industry sources.

FET and CHT are cooperating with Iconlab and SimpleAct , respectively, to offer free downloads of various versions of QR Code software, with versions specifically tailored for camera lens kits of different handset models supporting QR Code services, the sources pointed out. There are currently nearly 50 GPRS or 3G camera phone models able to support QR Code services, the sources indicated.

Taiwan Mobile, another top three operator, is evaluating QR Code services, according to the company.

How soon before a US wireless carrier sees this enormous opportunity?

Monday, August 14, 2006

Brands- Are You Ready For Mobile Marketing?

A nice summary of the mobile marketing platforms coming.

From ReveNews Mobile Media- Is your brand ready for 2007?

The spawn of the Internet revolution that is mobile media represents one of the first new channels to arise in more than 50 years and will quickly become a primary means of reaching out to customers.

Cell phones, iPods and game consoles are part of the new mobile media. With companies like's Rusell Buckley's company), merchants are able to reach out to specific channels as never before.

For merchants having issues with consumers who are unwilling to type in their long domain name, check out Semacode's Software Development Kit. Semacode works by embedding a web address into a sort of two-dimensional barcode. Using the Semacode Software Development Kit, you can create visual tags for objects and contexts and read them using a mobile camera phone. For more details, visit

Another amazing freak of technology to watch out for is , which was created by . It's basically a digital phone that captures the bar code-like image and propels the consumer to complete the purchase. Check it out. They have simplified mobile commerce that finally enables businesses to make mobile commerce a reality.

Other applications for the mobile phone.
Mobile Coupons
Mobile ticketing
Contest Entries
Text 2 Screen
Live Events
Consumer Acquisition
Direct Sales

I find it positive that this article mentions two of the physical world connection players for new mobile technology platforms, but they didn't include the two that are getting the most traction.

They failed to mention NextCode , and their ConnexTo and ScanBuy .

They are the PWC getting the most traction these days.

The eBay For Bar Codes

Can you see how using a camera phone to scan a barcode could create a powerful ecommerce site?

Next month, Boston-based entrepreneurs Greg Boesel and Mark Hexamer plan to launch , a website to help consumers trade books, CDs, DVDs, and video games.

Using complex algorithms, the site immediately calculates what traders can receive after they create "have" and "want" lists.

Customers list what they have to trade by entering the product bar code, which allows the site to post a picture, third-party reviews, and to automatically identify details, ranging from the particular edition to whether a book is hardcover or paperback or if a DVD is in normal or widescreen format.

Brandmovers Selects Qtags For SMS Platform

Advertisers and consumers are going to look for one portal, or short code, if they want to make mobile info work.

qtags and Brandmovers create mobile marketing platform

Brandmovers, Inc., "The Engagement Marketers," and qtags , a short-code texting platform, have teamed up to offer advertisers turn-key solutions for text-message powered promotional campaigns.

Brandmovers will use qtags as its exclusive text-messaging platform for mobility-oriented advertising and promotional campaigns, and qtags will exclusively offer Brandmovers powered micro-sites that enable advertisers to engage their audience with community offerings and news, as well as deliver coupons, contests and instant-win solutions.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Physical World Connection Job

One of the companies on the Physical World Connection list is looking to hire.

In my opinion, this company is one of the top PWC companies, and this could be a great ground-floor opportunity.

Job Title: Lead developer

Description: Here are the basics:

******is a small and highly innovative company that offers an enjoyable and challenging work environment.

As a ******* programmer you'll exert a strong influence in the technical future of our product(s). You'll become responsible for achieving our technological goals and improving our software based on (y)our own and our customer's feedback. And ofcourse you'll be playing with/working with the latest mobile gadgets.

Your general profile should look as followed:

- Extensive experience in C++ and Java (more languages is a plus)
- Good understanding of server based technologies
- Experience with embedded systems is a plus
- Incredibly curious personality with a strong interest in new languages/platforms/challenges
- University level thinking
- Self motivated
- Organised (at least on your computer)
- Not afraid to communicate your own opinion on things
- Entrepreneurial
- Good sense of humor

If you're interested in the JOB, not just who is hiring, please email me and I will put you in touch.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Text Messaging Getting Traction For Mobile Marketing

USA Today has a good story on text messaging and the role it's playing in mobile marketing.

USA Today's parent company, Gannett, was smart enough to see how big this spade will be and acquired a stake in 4INFO

With readers fleeing newspapers and TV viewers zapping past commercials, advertisers are turning to the one device consumers can't seem to escape: their cellphones.

Mobile phones and wireless devices have quietly become the newest, hottest frontier for big brands from Pepsi to Nike, especially those itching to reach the coveted 18- to 34-year-old set.

Mobile marketing companies mentioned include Third Screen Media and JumpTap

TellMe Is a Physical World Connection Company

I have discussed the idea of the camera on your mobile phone being your "mouse" for the physical world, but your voice could too. A voice browser.

A camera can recognize machine readabale identifiers (barcodes, images, RFID tags) and act as physical world hyperlinks.

The concept of saying specific words that would link to specific sites, or offer targeted information is also a form of physical world connection.

From BusinessWeek TellMe tries a new trick

Rather than PCs and browsers, they'd use their voices to navigate the Net. Founder Mike McCue called his vision DialTone 2.0.

Imagine how easy surfing would be if you could speak your search query, instead of typing it on your mobile.

TellMe is in discussions with Web portals, search engines, and wireless carriers about melding its voice products with their services and distribution.

With more than 2 billion cell phones in use world-wide (many with Web browsers) and carriers and Internet portals looking for new ways to make money, Microsoft and McCue are betting that voice-driven Web information will become much more popular.

"Your voice can be the mouse of the mobile phone," says analyst Seamus McAteer at researcher M:Metrics.

To see how TellMe works, try these out.

411 for Cingular
411 for Verizon home phones
1-800-DOMINOS, and more

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

McDonald's Chooses Enpocket For Mobile Couponing

Mobile marketing leader Enpocket, lands a big one.

McDonald's chose a leading mobile marketing company, to introduce an innovative marketing concept.

They are targeting right demographic and I can see lots of advertising going into unique campaigns.

From Yahoo McDonald's selects Enpocket for late-night store traffic

Enpocket , the leader in intelligent mobile marketing, announced today that it has been selected by McDonald's to provide mobile couponing for a direct response marketing campaign.

The campaign will drive localized retail traffic during the traditionally slower late evening hours with a series of weekly mobile coupons for late-night offers.

In addition, the campaign will be supported by mobile advertising banners running across several popular mobile internet sites, where consumers are targeted by age and location.

Enpocket provides mobile marketing that works for hundreds of the world's largest brands, including:

Mobile Carriers: Cingular, Sprint, Alltel, Vodafone, Airtel

Media Companies: News Corp, CNBC, A&E, Clear Channel, Chrysalis, Internet Broadcast Systems, Sony Pictures, TNT, Trinity Mirror

Brands: Wal-Mart, Dunkin Donuts, Pepsi, Subway, Motorola, Samsung, Panasonic, BenQ-Siemens, Procter and Gamble, Sprite and GM

Big Media Invests In Physical World Connection

Was big media the first to adopt physical world connection?

I find it interesting that a major media holding company invested in probably the first physical world connection company.. They had the right idea, but the wrong device.

Do the major media companies see the billions of "CueCats" already on the market?

In a story that focuses on how the news is slanted by powerful interests, we see how Belo Corporation and their WFAA TV station tried to introduce PWC.

High-tech gizmos often have a special place on local TV news. Even more so when the TV station's parent company is behind the new invention.

Belo Corporation invested $40 million in a company called Digital Convergence that manufactures a bar code-scanning device called CueCat. Those using CueCat on their personal computers can scan the bar codes on advertisements, calling up more information about that product.

According the Dallas Observer (9/21/00,) Dallas station WFAA-Channel 8 ran segments about CueCat three nights in a row in September on their news broadcast. WFAA is owned by Belo

People can mock and criticize the CueCat, but the concept was way ahead of it's time and people couldn't imagine connecting the physical world to the Internet yet. Now some "visionaries" are calling it a killer app.

Daem Interactive Image Recognition PWC Player

Daem Interactive allows all camera phones to use images as physical world hyperlinks.

Their technology “augments” the reach of the advertisements supports, allowing users to capture images of products, adverts or logos to immediately receive relevant information on their mobile handsets, creating interactivity between users and advertisers

Every magazine, billboard, logo, poster, and product packaging will act as a link to the electronic world.

When the user locates a promo he takes a picture of the advertisement or logo and sends the image to a short-code or e-mail adress. Our image recognition technology identifies the image and sends related multimedia contents back to the user.
Works for all camera phones.

User receives multimedia content.

The system can be used to take part in promotions, buy tickets to a show, download contents, access consumer reviews…mobile visual searches are most efficient way to obtain information on demand.

Notice how big the LIST is getting to be ?

I expect the major players (Yahoo, Google, Microsoft) to enter this space shortly.

BaToo A Physical World Connection Player

Add Zurich based BaToo to the physical world connection company list .

BaToo is a freely available 1D barcode recognition toolkit that is intended to facilitate the creation of novel applications and services based on the recognition of EAN13 codes using camera equipted mobile phones.

We believe that the adequate performance of our recognition software, when compared with existing commercial implementations, the ease with which external data sources can be integrated, and the availability of our toolkit under an open source license will help to foster the the use of camera phones as mobile bar code scanners.

The idea of linking real-world products with virtual information has been around for quite some time. In 1998, Barrett and Maglio already described a system for attaching information to real-world objects [BM98] , while 1999 Want et al. expanded upon the idea and linked arbitrary items through the use of RFID tags with both information services and actions [WFGH99].

Obviously, using bar codes for linking real-world objects to virtual information has a number of drawbacks when compared to an RFID-enabled future with corresponding mobile RFID readers, such as NFC-enabled1 mobile phones

Monday, August 07, 2006

Many Functions Of A Physical World Hyperlink

All About Mobile Life has a good story on why physical world hyperlinks, in this case a QR code, will replace a lot of the other forms of electronic identifiers for communication.

The 2d code will replace the short code, phone number, web address, and email.

Space, ease of use and direct connect to Internet information are the most obivous.

A company doing that now in the States is NextCode with their ConnexTo application.

With Connexto you can generate codes that contain:

1. URLs to access WAP or web sites
2. SMS messages with
3. Phone numbers to auto-dial
4. Contact information

The Blind Are Using Physical World Connection

Scanning a barcode will offer other informative applications besides price comparison. I view this as a wirelessCueCat.

The CueCat might not seem like a bad idea any more.

Engineers at Carnegie Mellon University are developing affordable scanning systems to give blind people greater independence in daily activities, such as cooking, grocery shopping or riding a bus.

Their system relies on devices available in any electronics store, including a cell phone, Bluetooth wireless headset and portable bar code scanner.

Here's how the Trinetra prototype works:

The blind person uses a bar code-reading pencil to scan a grocery item. The information is sent via the wireless headset to an Internet-enabled cell phone.

The phone communicates with a public database, which translates the bar code into a recognizable product name.

This name is relayed to the cell phone, where text-to-speech software articulates it into the headset.

Using this technology, Rossi can shop for groceries without the help of a friend or store clerk. He also can distinguish between products in his own refrigerator and kitchen cabinet

Friday, August 04, 2006

Magnetic Physical World Hyperlinks

From AssemblyMag Device reads data matrix codes though paint

Researchers at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center (Huntsville, AL) have developed a way to read Data Matrix codes even if they are obscured by paint or coatings.

The technique requires that the Data Matrix code be printed on the part with a magnetic material. A specially designed scanner can then read the code either optically or magnetically.

The magnetic marks can be read under conditions that would render optical methods useless. For example, the scanner can read the codes through contaminants, in the dark, or under bright light that would wash out conventional markings. In addition, assemblers can use the technology to deliberately hide Data Matrix codes for security reasons

Fonaticket Launches Mobile Ticketing For Cinema

A new paperless ticketing system, which allows cinemagoers use their mobile phone in place of a ticket, has been launched in Dublin.

Cinemagoers logged onto the website, entered their mobile phone number and then received a special text message containing a unique bar code, which was then scanned upon their arrival at the cinema

ScanBuy Launches WAP Search Site

Until camera phones are able to read 1d barcodes, a WAP site will kick start this enormous industry.

Scanbuy , a physical world connection company , launches a WAP search site.

Just go to

I can see numerous applications that will be offered from this besides price comparison.

If Scanbuy is smart they will open this application up, or take suggestions and let users determine what kind of information THEY WANT from a barcode.

Scanbuy is doing everything right in promoting the physical world connection space.

TBS Very Funny Very Innovative

I think this is a unique idea and could be a platform for many other ways to interact with ads and shows on TV. All advertisr should be getting their own text message ads during the show.

I think TBS is on to something with this show, but I think it might be better to start with a free SMS concept first, then add the premium messaging.

TV station TBS will be airing a SMS-based interactive game show called "Midnight Money Madness".

A new show on TBS, premiering August 28th, will have viewers exercising their thumbs along with their brains as they text-message their way to cash and prizes.

Midnight Money Madness, created by the digital arm of production company Endemol, the same company that created Big Brother and Deal or No Deal, is trying to bring the live, call-in game show into the 21st century.

The show will be emceed by two comedians, and will feature man-on-the street interviews and celebrity guests. The show will have no on-screen contestants or studio audience.

Instead, viewers register as contestants online, through a premium SMS message, or by calling a 900 number. If the show contacts them, contestants participate in the show as it airs by answering trivia questions and solving puzzle games.

Participants who register via text message or the 900 number will get Madness-branded content sent to their mobile phones as the show airs.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

2D Codes The Promise Of The Wireless Digital Revolution

A great summary about QR Codes (2D code) from Ogilvy & Mather and how they represent
promise of the wireless digital revolution.

It's nice to see a major advertiser recognize how big physical world connection will be.

North West Airlines is using 2d codes to make ads interactive and informative.

QR codes provide a machine link between print and online media advertising. It is the no-keyboard way to find and be connected to an internet address.

Billboards talk to phones

By looking at Tokyo, we can get a glimpse of what is in store for other early-adopting cities around the world.

The clear trend is that almost any object, machine or advertising space can be reacted to and be a prompt to the consumer. This is the promise of the wireless digital revolution.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Healthy Living Physical World Connection

There are more useful functions than price comparison when scanning a barcode with a mobile device.

Physical world connection helps patients track food intake, check nutrition

Food labels do not always contain the necessary information, and the patients needed a way to monitor their intake over the course of a day to make sure they did not exceed recommended levels of certain types of food and fluid, the researchers say.

Now the PDAs, loaded with programs that contain the food content information on the foods patients eat, could solve that problem. The handheld devices also will offer personalized information on how much phosphorus, potassium, sodium, calories, fluid and protein a patient should eat.

Right now the researchers are experimenting with using PDAs that can scan a product's barcode to learn the relevant nutritional information

2D Codes Used For M-Commerce

A member of QuickMark demonstrates a QR Code (2-dimension bar codes) software for selected Windows Mobile phones during a press preview yesterday to promote the upcoming Taipei Computer Application Show.

The software makes it possible, with use of the built-in cameras, to turn your mobile phone into a wallet. The software records an amount of money saved, and that data is transferred to the mobile phone, which can then be used when shopping.

Full story

Physical World Connection Soda Machines

It's not a camera phone, but think of the PWC possibilities if vending machines had barcode scanners attached to them.

PWC Vending Machine

Right now, the machine has attached to it a barcode scanner, a fingerprint reader, and a web cam for facial recognition.

Want a Coke? Stick your thumb on the reader so the machine recognizes you as having an account, take out the drink, scan it with the barcode reader, then walk way, never having had to reach into your pocket for change

The project, called SodaVision (, is the brainchild of UCSD engineering associate professor Stefan Savage.

Subway And MobileLime Do Mobile Marketing

MobileLime® , the first company to turn the mobile phone into a marketing, loyalty and payment device, today announced that 12 Subway® franchises owned by QSR Brands in Buffalo, New York are the first in the area to market to preferred customers in real-time by offering alerts and discount coupons via customers' cell phones.

With the Mobile Alerts Club, QSR Brands' customers will opt-in to the preferred program at the location(s) they frequent, allowing them to receive periodic coupons, last minute specials and event alerts directly on their cell phones

Subway's Mobile Alerts Club is available today and free to consumers. Consumers in the Buffalo area can sign up at any one of the 12 participating Subway locations or by sending a text message from their cell phone with the code "7299" (SBWY) to the number 35562.