Coke adds choice to life

“Coke’s RFID-Based Dispensers Redefine Business Intelligence” by Mary Hayes Weier (Information Week, 8 June 2009) Don’t let the geeky title scare you. Put yourself in the shoes of a Coke guest and read between the lines. This a perfect example of the shift in expectations that’s being driven by the empowerment guest now enjoy as a result of “technology”. Offline or online is not important. What is important is the experience. As much we hate to tip our hats to high frutose corn syrup & water, Kudos to Coke for this effort.

Our guess is that eventually Coke will link all the machines so that instead of having to reenter your custom flavour everytime you’ll be able to enter your own code and the Freestyle machine / network will take care of the rest. There’s also the possiblity of integrating the machines with a web site (or social network widget) and letting people share their custom flavours. Similar to Abobe’s Kuler (http://kular.adobe.com) but slightly¬† different.

All privacy issues aside

10 Best Uses for RFID Tags by Mike Olson, Wired Magazine (www.Wired.com, Issue 17.03, March 2009). Like it or not, RFID is coming. The questions – how to use it in new and innovative ways.

1) Accept and integrate RFID into the retail shopping experience by using them to trigger video and other images on large screen TVs around the store. Using RFID to help customers get more info about a product they’re interested in would also be a big plus.¬† It would be like taking the web experience and turning it into a real life experience.

2) Similar to the article’s mention of Clubs using it, what about ski resorts? Why are they still using those silly barcode scanners? Yes a liftie would still have to police the line but getting rid of that handheld scanner should free them up to actually attend to the wants / needs of the¬† guests.