A new, UK-based Beacon technology company called Iconeme has figured out an innovative way to enable store mannequins to transmit information to passers’ by about the clothing they’re modeling. It works through an app that users download, and something called a VMBeacon device that is installed on the mannequin, and the information transmitted by the beacon is stored in the cloud, so it can be accessed remotely. When users with the app are within 100 meters of the VMBeacon, they get an alert about the clothes on the mannequin, in addition to prices, direct purchase links, and information about the store the item is in. As well, they can share the look via social networks, or save it for later. The device itself has a battery life of up to three years, and because the content can be changed remotely, it’s maintenance-free. It represents one of the first – but most definitely not the last – introduction of beacons into the retail space to call consumers to action and increase sales.
Microsoft’s Kinect technology made another appearance in creative out-of-home displays as airport clothing store United Arrows debuted its new front window display in Tokyo featuring United Arrows-clad MarionetteBots (half mannequin, half robot) that mimic the movements of passerby. The inclusion of marionette strings gives some charm to the mannequins’ somewhat clumsy movements, and the engagement factor is certainly high. Kinect technology has been enticing brands for some time, and more creative uses of it like this are certainly on the horizon.