Earlier this month we heard that Nokia was testing out a mobile advertising strategy in Helsinki’s Kamppi Shopping Center. Today Nokia has announced another mobile shopping-related initiative in the form of a downloadable application called Point & Find.
The beta version of Point & Find is available for select Nokia handsets in the United States and United Kingdom. It allows users to do a couple of interesting things currently. First, users can take pictures of product barcodes in stores and Point & Find will return product information, reviews, and the lowest prices for the item online. Second, users can take a picture of a movie poster, and Point & Find will return information such as trailers, reviews, showtimes nearby, and in the United States even allow users to purchase tickets from their Nokia phones.
Nokia hopes to make money from the application by enabling brands to develop interactive campaigns with it. In essence, by connecting real-world objects to pertinent online information and promotions. This is something that has been happening in Japan for some time. And it looks like the timing is ripe to introduce it to the US and UK.
A case study (PDF) Nokia conducted at its Experience Store in a San Francisco mall revealed that shoppers enjoyed the immediacy of available information and even the reduction in sales pressure. Testers rated Point & Find an average of 4.03 out of 5 for improving the shopping experience, 4.06 our of 5 for enjoyment and perhaps most importantly, 4.44 out of 5 for ease of use. Furthermore, after testers received initial product information they were given three options. One, they could get more detailed information; two, they could save the product to a “wish list”; and three, they could send the information to a friend.
I found the fact that 67 percent of testers said the “wish list” was their favorite feature fascinating. Why? Because it implies that even with the immediacy of shopping information available, the majority of people actually found Point & Find useful for organizing future purchases.