12.05.2012

Augmented (Non) Reality with NBC TV

Recently, NBC TV in New York ran this print ad, which makes use of augmented reality technology from Aurasma.


Locating and downloading the Aurasma Lite app was simple enough, but too bad scanning the page was not. After making certain there was enough light, the page laid flat and the phone's camera was close enough to focus correctly, nothing happened when the page was scanned multiple times. No "extra content" here. Too bad.

What's also too bad is that this is an all or nothing advertisement, meaning if the augmented reality scan does not work, there's nothing else for the consumer to experience and/or make use of. If a back-up URL address was given in the ad, at least the consumer could go there and see something, anything, and possibly become a viewer or user of NBC TV weather reports.    

With all of that aside, I question the part of the directions which states, "point your device at this ad for extra content." Shouldn't that read, "point your mobile phone's camera at this ad for extra content?" If brands need to educate consumers about something as new and different as augmented reality and QR Codes, etc., I believe talking in specifics helps.

Lastly, whenever I come across campaigns that fail at the point of contact (i.e., the scan itself), I wonder how well the technology was tested.

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