Monday, April 16, 2007

Announce Mobile's CEO Discusses Hip2D

There has been a lot of attention given recently to the use of 2D codes in marketing. Solutions such as NeoMedia’s qode® technology have been a driving force behind this attention. Since this is such a large topic and there are many aspects to it, I am going to split the discussion across a series of posts (between e-mail and this blogging thing I will have carpel tunnel in a month otherwise).

Announce Mobile has selected qode as the backbone for our Hip2D solution. We have been getting a lot of questions surrounding what Hip2D is exactly and how we are using qode in it. Hip2D is essentially qode. The underlying difference is that we have added the design, implementation, hosting, and management of the complete WAP interface to it. So with Hip2D not only do you get qode and all that goes along with it, you also get the content to link the 2D code to.

Why is this important? Because without the content, the 2D code goes nowhere plain and simple. It is up to the business or organization purchasing the 2D code to develop and manage the content. Now don’t get me wrong and before everyone runs out and says Jeff from Announce Mobile is bad mouthing qode. I’m not, don’t worry! qode IS important because without it, the content is not as valuable. qode makes the content available and easy to use for the consumer. So they NEED each other. This content can consist of product information, a ringtone/music/wallpaper/game download, a hint or clue for a scavenger hunt, a price lookup, or a product information portal. The possibilities are nearly endless as to what you can provide to the consumer via qode.

So what is qode? Without delving into the entire technical jargon and long drawn out explanation, for now let’s leave it at qode is a mobile code-reading platform which can read and decipher UPCs and 2-dimensional barcodes. There are several different standards for these codes and together with a longer explanation we will discuss that in a future post. NeoMedia’s qode works by installing an application, called the qode®reader, onto a standard camera phone. The qode®reader software integrates into the camera and allows the consumer to take a picture of the 2D code. Combined with a back-end server, it then translates that code and redirects the consumer’s mobile browser to a specific piece of content. Like a UPC symbol on the back of a box of cereal translates into what brand, type, and price at the grocery store, the 2D code does essentially the same thing but on steroids. Instead of just providing a basic piece of information (i.e. name/brand/price), the code can provide a lot more and can be dynamic. The result provided by a qode can be based on location, phone make/model, user preference, time of day, time of year, the list goes on.

An example of use of qode is the corner video store. How many times have you gone to a movie store, looked at several movies, and wondered just what the movie was about? Would making a decision have been easier if you could have watched a trailer for the movie while you were in the store? Had the movie case had a 2D code on it, and assuming you had the qode®reader installed on your phone, you probably could have. Of course for this example to work at all, there are several other pieces that need to be provided, and that is where Announce Mobile and NeoMedia have teamed up to provide a complete solution called Hip2D.

Hip2D would have been the driving power behind that movie trailer you would have watched on your phone. Working directly with studios, or even the corner video store, a 2D code could have been printed on the DVD insert and mobally linked to a WAP portal that in turn would have streamed the video to your phone (assuming your phone could handle video).

So there you have it. That is Hip2D in a nutshell and that is why Hip2D is such an important product for Announce Mobile and NeoMedia. Due to the depth of this topic, the amount of discussion causes, and overall interest level, I am going to take each day this week to discuss a different aspect of the 2D code industry. We will discuss the new MC2 initiative, the technology and definitions behind 2D codes, and uses for Hip2D. In the meantime, go download qode by going to on your mobile phone. Before doing so though, visit the qode web page to make sure your handset is supported. And who knows maybe sometime this week or next we will have a little contest for everyone.

Source: Announce Mobile Blog

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