Motion Sensors as a Marketing Enhancer
Nowadays, people have very high expectations regarding marketing experiences. They are looking for instant gratification and enjoyment and are becoming more demanding when it comes to deliver attention. Brands, companies and agencies have to come up with more creative ideas in order to attract and engage with their audiences.
The use of digital and technology is a valuable option and a secure choice… it’s something that people like and it has thousands of possible outcomes. Of course, digital technologies bring a lot of possibilities, but there is also a lot to choose from – digital signage, touchscreens, games and so on, which can lead to some overwhelming feeling’s.
For this paper, we will focus on one technology that can be integrated with several solutions and other technologies – Motion Detection.
Fast to deploy, cheap to buy and with multiple solutions when it comes to engagement.
Motion detection is achieved by using sensors. Motion Sensors are basically devices that receive and respond to a signal. This allows to detect a change in the position of an object or a body relatively to its surroundings or another object or body. You can remember this technology in security systems, to detect an intruder and sound an alarm, or in domestic and commercial applications such as people detection to turn a light on. Indeed, very useful in a lot of ways.
If you add creativity and fun to this technology, you can imagine that, for marketing, the applications are endless.
How do Motion Sensors work?
There are several ways to detect motion automatically. Below are some of the more common technologies:
Infrared – passive (PIR) and active (AIR) sensors
This technology works at short wavelengths which makes these sensors perfect for detecting close objects with no obstacles in the middle. They are both small and cheap. The main differences between them is that AIR is self-illuminating, can directly measure range and velocity of targets and can function effectively with any light.
Optics (video and camera systems)
With the spread of low-cost digital cameras able to shoot video, it is possible to use the output of such a camera to detect motion in its field of view using software. This solution is particularly attractive when the intent is to record video triggered by motion detection, because there is no need for extra hardware.
However, it will only work in environments with good or fair light, it will not work in the dark (unless of course, it’s an IR camera).
Radio Frequency Energy & Microwave
The use of radio waves to read and capture information stored on a tag attached to an object. A reader doesn’t need to be in the direct line of sight of a tag for this to work. It can even be at several feet away. Used a lot for identification, commonly known as RFID. Great for objects or people that are moving fast.
For Microwaves, the process is a bit different. It produces a continuous wave of radiation that bounces when it hits an object and detects its motion.
An ultrasonic wave is sound at a higher frequency than a human ear can hear. It’s emitted and then it’s reflections are received from nearby objects. This is better for broader audiences at a large venue rather than detection for a game or interaction with a selective object. It can also be used to interact with tablets or smartphones, even when they are idle, since the device mic never sleeps.
Nowadays, motion detection uses a variety of technologies altogether. This serves to enhance accuracy and exclude the drawbacks of each technology. Some examples are false triggering or the failure to detect due to light restrictions. These multi-technology motion sensors gave way to the creation of a best-seller. Kinect is the favorite motion sensor for experimental marketing and other marketing activities.
Kinect’s development codename was Project Natal and it was first launched in November 4th 2010. It’s a Microsoft add-on that provides a Natural User Interface (NUI). This allows users to interact with a game or solution intuitively and without any intermediary device.
The name Kinect comes from the world of physics, derived from the concept of Kinetic Energy. This is the energy that an object has due to its motion. An object that has motion – whether it is vertical or horizontal motion – has kinetic energy. This energy depends on the mass of the object and the speed of the object. But, let’s forget about it… It’s all about the FUN that this technology can bring to Marketing and brand activations.
This system identifies individual players through full-body 3D motion capture, face and voice recognition. It uses a depth camera and an IR motion sensor to recognize gestures and software to understand voice commands.
Although Kinect was developed for playing games in the Xbox It immediately caught up to other uses. It is applied to real-world events, such as digital signage, virtual shopping and even education and health.