Friday, 9 January 2009

Microsoft Tag – The future of Mobile??

The Microsoft website poses the question, ‘What is Mobile Tagging?’… A very good question, I mean it looks like a colourful version of the QR codes we’ve been seeing for a few years now.

So could this be the future of mobile?

In short… yes it could be. The main difference with Microsoft Tag, lies within the technology of the code itself. The technology powering Microsoft Tag, or High Capacity Colour Barcodes (HCCBs), was invented by Microsoft Research. It was designed with the limited cameras on most mobile phones, with advanced image-processing techniques resulting in the ability to decode even out-of-focus barcode images.

As explained by Microsoft the computer imaging of HCCBs employs different symbol shapes in geometric patterns and multiple colours to provide more information in less space.

This means that the HCCB’s are much better suited for use on packaging and advertising where available space is limited. Other advantages include the fact that the new codes are completely compatible with the latest smartphones, and once the Microsoft Tag reader has been installed allows for much more information to be sorted on each code. There is also the promise of much richer consumer analytics data, and further scope for creativity within campaigns.

At the moment the service is in Beta, and is free to use, so anyone can create, download, or use the Microsoft Tagging service. For example here is an example of Funkadelic Advertising in Microsoft Tag form…