iPhone Bump for Retail?

A friend just turned me on to the latest iPhone app to garner lots of buzz. Its called Bump. When two people meet and both have the Bump application running, they can "bump" iPhones to exchange contact information. You can see it work in the YouTube video embedded below.

Sounds like near field communications (NFC), but its not. The bump signals the app to send the GPS coordinates to a server over the internet. If two iPhones send data at the same time with close coordinates, a "bump" is assumed. Then iPhone A sends his contact data to the server, and the server forwards it to iPhone B. And B to A as well.

Now let's transfer the concept to retail. Instead of contact information, let's pass coupons. And instead of bumping two iPhones together, let's just walk into a store and shake our iPhone. That signals the application to send GPS coordinates to the server in the sky, and based on the location, coupons for that store are downloaded. Local, on-demand coupons. Awesome.

But wait, there's more. When you get to the register, "bump" the register to transfer your coupons over. Send your credit card information too, because the communications are encrypted. We just need an internet connection, so no special NFC technology is required.

I might be on to something here...

Comments:

FYI--at my suggestion, this blog was circulated on Tesco's internal IT R&D newsletter today. Congrats

Miles

Posted by Miles Thomas on July 27, 2009 at 07:56 PM CDT #

I agree with you: There is an opportunity on USSD not explored, probably because it requires a big integration with the mobile carriers and it is a closed environment.

I saw some examples of services in the banking area. Do you have examples of success services in community/entertainment area using USSD?

Posted by iphone crowds on November 17, 2009 at 10:41 PM CST #

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David Dorf, Sr Director Technology Strategy for Oracle Retail, shares news and ideas about the retail industry with a focus on innovation and emerging technologies.


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