“The PP suggests a great application for eBay. Say you’re running an auction and you want to maximise local impact. Maybe for something better sold locally anyway (like a bike), but want to tap into eBay’s familiar platform. You can print out a flyer, complete with Shot Code, to put in your local supermarket. People “click” on the Shot Code and can see the price reached and place a bid – all from the comfort of their own phone :-)”
I had some similar thoughts that might turn into business one day, but since I won’t be doing anything in that area in the foreseeable future, I might as well post them here:
This one is obvious. Mobile payment is lacking (not talking about lack of users again…) an easy way to get the process started, i.e. how does the payment information get to your phone? As most people will not be shopping in a WAP context, this might mean typing in a URL or code, or transfer via infrared or bluetooth.
Wouldn’t it be nice if you could just point your phone camera at a small code picture on the product to start the process?
Even better, this is not limited to a store environment: the code may be on a poster on a wall, or on an advert in a magazine. Combine this with a price search engine that links you up with the cheapest vendor, automatically transfers payment and address information and does the deal, and you’ve got a pretty nice solution.
That even works offline: Some phones may have a camera, but that can not be accessed by J2ME applications (thank you, Nokia!). You can still snap a picture and process it on your desktop PC, though.
All those people putting up ads must be wondering who if they really do reach their target audience. Put a code on the advert, and have people “shop” the code, which in this case means take part in some kind of price drawing. You’ll get excellent data, including locations (which you can include in the code).
A provider of a mobile marketing platform like this could manage the customer information to be disclosed, based on the customers preferences.
Got any more ideas? Let’s hear them!