Sunday, September 10, 2006

bcode launches bcode drinks

SYDNEY, Australia (7 SEP 2006).
18 months after ADI invested seed capital of $250k and 1 year after CM Capital and Innovation Capital Invseted a series A round of $5m into BCOde, to commercialise its patent-pending bCODETM mobile ticketing and mobile identification technology. the first application has arrived - BCOde Drinks.

A consumer social networking drinks portal - Users of this web portal are able to shout “wireless drinks” for friends and colleagues - which are sent as encoded SMS messages - as well as being able to create and customise multimedia messages appearing on the video screens at bar venues upon scanning and redemption. No cash needed. No bar tabs. Just scan your mobile phone at the bar to get a round of drinks. A “bCODE-Drink” is a pre-purchased drink voucher that can be stored as a normal SMS message. It can be freely forwarded from the buyer to anyone he/she wishes, thereby shouting them “wireless drinks”. Upon scanning of this bCODE-Drink at the bar, a personalised message created by the buyer of the bCODE-Drink will be displayed on the video screen at the venue.

The bCODE Drinks website allows users to choose different themes and graphics for the animated message sent to the bCODE Drink recipient. The themes include set themes such as birthdays and congratulations, as well as user-created messages and graphics. The image upload feature allows for plenty of flexibility, and could include photos, humour, cartoons, or
corporate logos for business-related occasions. The bCODE Readers present at the venues are connected to the Internet via wireless broadband.

This service is initially offered at 15 Sydney metropolitan bar venues. These are Roof Bar
Skygardens, Lenin Bar, Minus 5, Verandah Bar, The Vault Hotel, The Vault Lounge, Bar Cleveland, The Royal Oak Double Bay, Bayview Tavern, Charlie Chan’s, The World Bar, Epping Hotel, Hillside Tavern, Beverley Hills Hotel and Kogarah Tavern.

“The bCODE-Drinks application offers a fun way for people to buy friends and colleagues the first rounds of drinks on a Friday afternoon. We are utilising the latest in wireless technologies to add humour and entertainment to Friday social activities,” said Michael Mak, CEO of bCODE.

The bCODE-Drinks website additionally offers a number of fun and related applications. “Friday Drinks Countdown” is an event planner for urban activities around the 15 bar venues at launch. “BeerChallenge” allows users to challenge each other on sporting results and current affairs over a couple of beers. “Celebrity Networking” utilises the bCODE Shout-Drink functionality to let users socialise with accomplished and notable professionals from the worlds of entertainment, media and business at the bar venues.

bCODE has plans to extend this wireless application beyond beverages into other types of services such as retailers, café, restaurants, theatre, events, festivities and other attractions in metropolitan Sydney and later throughout major urban centres across Australia.
bCODE technology is Australian developed and world-leading. It is the only technology in the world today that supports automatic scanning for more than 99% of the 2.5 billion mobile devices in the market, including PDAs, RIM Blackberry, Palm Treo and even portable music players like the Apple iPOD.

“Beside retail services like bCODE-Drinks, bCODE technology has the potential to replace a substantial part of the 1 billion paper tickets printed per year in Australia alone. We are rolling
out a number of mobile ticketing services with our partners in the coming months, and bCODE-Drinks is a great way for us to generate consumer awareness, and bring an element of fun and excitement in the process of replacing paper,” said Mak.

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