Posts Tagged ‘Brightkite’

Geolocation is now rewarding

September 7, 2010

Family photo at Camden Yards, Oriole Wall of FameThis past weekend, I travelled with my family down to Baltimore for a reunion, including catching a ballgame at Camden Yards. While we were there, we stayed at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Timonium, MD. I’ve been using geolocation service Gowalla since Baer Tierkel turned me on to it in November of last year (2009). So upon arrival at the hotel, I opened the Gowalla app on my iPhone to check in. I immediately noticed that instead of a generic hotel icon, the Crowne Plaza had its own snazzy custom icon.

Crowne Plaza Gowalla iconSince the icon was so cool, I decided to send my Crowne Plaza check-in to Facebook and twitter. Within a short time, I noticed that a company I had never heard of sent me this tweet in response to my check-in:

Hi @mmpartee, join Topguest to get 50 Priority Club points for your next Crowne Plaza @gowalla check-in

Since I was busy with a family reunion, I didn’t have time to investigate this meaning behind this tweet until I returned home. So this morning, I visited the Topguest site, and noticed they had a Facebook page, which is good since there is very little about them on their own site. Via their Facebook page, I discovered this is a very new (4 month old) start-up based out of NYC.

They have 4 hotel reward programs under their belt, and they accept check-ins from all the major geolocation services: Brightkite, Foursquare, Gowalla, Facebook Places, and Twitter location. Topguest ties your geolocation check-in method(s) of choice to your hotel reward program(s) of choice. Since I love Gowalla and am already a Priority Club member, it was a snap for me to link the two. Priority Club encompasses the InterContinental Hotels Group (ICHG) which includes: Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Crowne Plaza, Staybridge Suites, and another recent discovery I love: Hotel Indigo.

Geolocation: it’s not just for mayorships and games anymore…

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Recent Watershed Developments: Augmented Reality

October 2, 2009

Augmented Reality has come to the iPhone. This is big news. What is Augmented Reality? Here is the wikipedia article on it. An example:

Info on Yelp’s Augmented Reality offering.

Why is this a big leap forward? For several years, the new layer of information supplied online, that overlays the physical world (think Geocaching, Brightkite, GPS devices, etc) has been hidden from ordinary view. The concept of Augmented Reality has been around for a few years now, with perhaps the most well known example being the yellow first down line that is superimposed in real-time in televised national football. But that is a high-cost application available only to major businesses that can afford to produce it. The new class of Augmented Reality applications for the iPhone are the first that make World 2.0 visible to regular people on a consumer-level device. Also, anyone who writes software can potentially create an AR app for the iPhone. The possibilities for new applications seem endless. This is absolutely a game changer.

Augumented Reality for the iPhone is truly a major development. I’d love to hear what you think about it.

Next week, I will be publishing two more recent watershed developments, along with what I consider to be a huge punch in the face to credit union and community banking marketers everywhere.

The other recent watershed developments: Twitter bankingFinovate NYC 2009