The Kraft-owned confectionery producer is the launch partner for blippar, a new smartphone app that generates virtual experiences by superimposing graphics, audio and other sense enhancements onto physical products.
Cadbury is using blippar’s technology to turn its chocolate bars into a free augmented reality game, in what is claimed to be a world first.
“There have been other examples of augmented reality applications but these have been QR code or web-cam based,” Jessica Butcher, blippar’s marketing director, told ConfectioneryNews.com this morning. “Until now, the technology for image-recognition enabled augmented reality hasn’t been powerful enough to play with packaging in this way. blippar has also taken tracking technology - the ability to overlay and hold the product and image using a phone whilst moving - to a new level. Without this it wouldn’t be a great experience for the user.”
The ‘Qwak Smack’ game can be played by anyone with a smart phone. When the app is running, pointing the phone’s camera at a Cadbury countline launches a 30-second game in which quacking cartoon ducks emerge from the bar on an augmented overlay on the screen. The idea is to tap as many of the ducks as possible and players can submit their score to be entered into a draw to win prizes.
Butcher told ConfectioneryNews.com that the initial ‘Qwak Smack’ game would probably be replaced after a few months with a different application of blippar.
“The idea is that products will continually do different things to keep consumers interested. Our hope is that it’s the beginning of a long and beautiful relationship with Cadbury.”
Sonia Carter, head of digital at Kraft Foods, said: “We loved blippar from the moment we saw it in action. We were blown away by the technology and we’re certain consumers will be. With one in three UK adults owning a smart phone the potential market for initiatives like this is huge.”
Whilst Cadbury may be the first food brand to use image-recognition enabled augmented reality technology, others in the industry have dabbled with augmented reality.
Last year, Ben & Jerry’s launched its Scoop of Happiness app with the Moo Vision augmented reality feature. By scanning the carton lid, consumers can generate images they can click on to find out more information and share with friends on social networks.
Also last year, agency Skive Digital of London created an augmented reality campaign for Kit Kat UK. Holding one of the special Kit Kat 4-Finger bar packages in front of a webcam unlocked a one-off Scouting for Girls performance.
And Unilever created an interactive ‘Share Happy’ ice cream machine that asks consumers to share a smile on Facebook to get a free ice cream.
Cadbury may be the first food brand to experiment with blippar, but it doesn’t look as though it will be long before others follow suit. Butcher hinted that “a number of other exciting grocery brands will be launching with blippar in the coming weeks.”