I talked to just about every booth owner and out of the many enthusiastic, quippy elevator pitches I heard, and the hundreds of brochures, strange-shaped business cards and QR codes I saw, here are four of the companies that stood out for me.
Veam — Films direct to audience. Profits direct to you.
I chatted with Nao Yoshikawa, the director of product management, who explained that Veam is about allowing content-creators to build a custom-app so they can easily monetize their content. App creation without any coding skills. The app can include videos, music, photos, weblinks and more.
Currently they’re working on a profit-share deal which splits any revenue you earn from your content (which can include ad serving revenue), and it seems like if you aren’t earning revenue, there’s no cost. Interesting business model; it will be interesting to see if it stays that way.
The demos he showed me were branded, so Veam is completely white-label and they looked pretty slick. They also handle getting your app into the App Store – a great feature for non-tech people.
There were a few other app makers around the show including App Express (the genius mobile app builder) which is pitched more towards small business, and ShoutEm (the mobile app maker with amazing superpowers). Both run on subscription models, both pretty affordable.
ThingLink— ThingLink lets users add interactive links to any photo and turn them into fun Web experiences that drive engagement.
ThingLink allows you to “tag” pictures with pop-out info which can include videos, pictures or text. The demo looked so simple, and it allows your viewer to have deeper engagement with an otherwise static image.
It doesn’t just work on Facebook either – you can integrate with WordPress, Tumblr, Blogger and Drupal. This was a really interesting product, with many, many cool applications; I encourage you to check it out.
Aurasma — The world’s first visual browser, bringing the physical and virtual worlds together.
These guys continue to impress me. I caught them at a NY Tech Meetup last year where they demo’ed the Aurasma iPad app by holding it over a newspaper, scanning the front page picture QR code style, which in turn brought up a video that was related to the news content, right there on the screen, in situ, on the page.
Great to see the evolution of their technology, which was a bit sketchy in the first demo. Here’s a shot of what they’re doing with Marvel’s Avengers VS X-Men—bringing a character to life by using your device to scan the movie poster.
We’ve worked a little with Blippar who have a similar image-scanning and augmented reality app, although I did not catch them in Austin. At an event jam-packed with QR codes, these guys are both providing yet another convincing push for the demise of those awkward-looking black and white squares.
While OtterBox is just another seller of protector covers for your mobile phone and other devices (and there were a ton of accessory booths), I loved their on-site promo of dropping an iPhone down a damaging gauntlet of metals pins. So simple, but interactive, and bang on message. Check it out:
The “promotion” of most value?
The AT&T charger locker. Drop by, get your free locker, plug in phone (the most common mobile chargers are supplied), lock it up, go to panel, come back, phone charged! So simple, but so useful.
— Gemma is JWT’s Global Communications Manager. Follow @gemss