Added Value Edits: The mobile future

08 Aug 2016|Added Value

Over the past 5 years, our lives have been revolutionized by the impact of mobile technology. From beacons to AI and VR to food retailing on touchscreen walls in Korean subway stations and ‘tinderizing’ shopping – it affects us all and is bound to accelerate in ways that are only starting to be dreamt of…

The end of exclusion? How mobile tech becomes a key development opportunity for the world’s ‘poor’
It is no surprise that mobile technology has emerged as one of the most remarkable revolutions in today’s world. In a short decade the mobile has become everyone’s essential multi-purpose device that unlocks a wealth of opportunities. But does this still hold true for the part of the population we consider ‘poor’, or have they been left in the dark? Click here to read what Added Value’s Agathe Laurent and Iditta Yuchourellu have to say on the issue.

5 ways brands can win using the latest mobile tech
In an increasingly fragmented world, brands need to earn every moment of contact with consumers. Cutting through the clutter is ever more difficult, especially in the digital realm, but thanks to technological advancement there are always new communication technologies coming through that brands can adopt in an attempt to one-up their competitors. Click here for five ways in which brands can win by using the latest mobile technologies.

The New York Times bets on Virtual Reality
Print media has been dramatically declining since the advent of the Internet, and the New York Times sees Virtual Reality as an opportunity to regain leadership of the cultural conversation. Following the launch of the NYT VR application, they have been creating dedicated content on a regular basis. To immerse yourself in the pilgrimage to Mecca or to explore the frozen surface of Pluto, all you need is a smartphone, the NYT VR app and a Google Cardboard. The 360° versions of the films are also made available on YouTube.

Try out beauty products with L’Oréal Makeup Genius
Still can’t figure out whether this shade of eyeshadow would fit your eye color better than another? L’Oréal’s got you covered – just open up the Makeup Genius application and scan the product you feel undecided about. The app turns your front camera into a mirror, using the same facial mapping technology as the film The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. It lets you virtually try out L’Oréal Paris makeup, and the experience is mind-blowing: the makeup moves with you as you start smiling or turn your head, for an amazingly realistic effect.

Benjamin, the app that ‘tinderizes’ shopping
The developers of the Benjamin app have cleverly tapped into two intertwined trends – the ‘swiping’ made popular by the dating app Tinder, and the time-sensitivity of content, driven by Snapchat. The concept is pretty straight-forward: when launching the app, users are presented with a special deal. They have 60 seconds to swipe and buy, or not – in which case the deal is gone and a new item appears. With their recent development of a ‘Swipe it, Shop it’ feature, Sephora has shown they’re interested in this as a new shopping experience – but they have some catching up to do.

Hub by Premier Inn, a mobile-first experience in Hospitality
The British hotel chain Premier Inn has launched a new brand of ‘smart’, tech-driven hotels – Hub by Premier Inn. The mold-breaking mobile-centric approach offers guests a genuinely new kind of experience. A mobile application allows users to manage every aspect of their stay: not only can they check in or pay for breakfast with just one tap of the finger, they can also control the various features of their room – TV, temperature, lights, and the ‘do not disturb’ sign.

How WeChat turns into a mobile Operating System
Messaging applications are the most used apps globally. By drastically expanding their features, these platforms have almost become fully-fledged mobile operating systems. Right from the start, China’s WeChat was designed as a holistic platform – enabling users to order taxis, make doctors appointments or check in before a flight – and with their payment feature, any transaction can be completed seamlessly, cementing user loyalty. Why go anywhere else?

Sports teams using beacons to engage fanbase
Beacons are the most widely used devices by businesses implementing a proximity marketing strategy. They have been significantly adopted in the North American sports industry, mostly by sports teams and stadiums. 93 percent of Major League Baseball stadiums are already equipped. Potential applications are multiple, from offering seat upgrades to fans entering the stadium, to boosting sales of team merchandising. During the Atlanta Hawks’ last NBA season, beacons accounted for no less than 11 percent of seat upgrades.

Mobile banking in emerging countries
In emerging countries, the persistently limited access to banking services hinders people’s financial inclusion. Mobile phones companies have started offering basic checking accounts, making saving and control of spending accessible to a much larger number of people. These accounts are easy to use and charge low fees – most of them allow users to make a transaction via a simple text message. The Kenyan M-Pesa was a pioneer in the field, and today the number of M-Pesa accounts surpasses the number of adults living in the country.

IKEA embraces Augmented Reality
The Swedish furniture maker recently overhauled its catalog mobile application to provide a new level of interactivity and applicability. Using Augmented Reality, consumers can scan particular items in the catalogue with their phone and superimpose them on their own home, allowing them to instantly see how a product would look in situ. The initiative has been a great success – studies showed that users spend 5 minutes more on the app than they spent flipping through the catalog.

Get in touch if you’d like to hear how Added Value can help you think about the mobile future.

Jonathan Hall
Global Chief Innovation Officer, Added Value
@HallCJonathan

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