Touchatag Developer Contest to Boost Urban Gaming

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Touchatag Developer Contest to Boost Urban Gaming

Isn't it incredible how areas of tech go out of favor quickly? RFID for example was talked about everywhere a few years back but now it doesn't get the attention it once did. Perhaps we are so overwhelmed with social media sites, 4G and smartphones that we don't have time to look at how RFID is evolving. This is why I was quite happy recently to see solid coverage of RFID on the Next Generation Communications blog and related Global Online Community which live on TMCnet.

What caught my eye is how Alcatel-Lucent has renamed its contactless tikitag service to touchatag while enhancing its related APIs and barcode support. There is tremendous application potential here - you can use this technology to improve event and travel ticketing as well as electronic payments and coupons.

Then there is the opportunity to use the technology to share contact information and distribute targeted advertising. Other areas of interest are smart toys and the ability to access corporate and government data based on location. This blog entry goes in a bit more depth and developers should check out the related community.

I almost forgot -- what caught my eye today was the fact that Alcatel-Lucent has announced a Vienna Jungle Scrum competition which challenges developers to come up with the most innovative near field communications (NFC) urban game. According to the blog post:

Urban gaming - also known as location-based gaming - leverages GPS and NFC technologies to create real-world games, like point-to-point races, scavenger hunts, problem solving - not unlike a localized, mobile-device based version of the popular reality TV show, Amazing Race - as well as interactive local tour applications.

The Vienna Jungle Scrum is open to developers across the globe through September 18, 2009, with winners being awarded a total of €5000 in cash prizes.

It seems with all the interest in location based applications, a blend of GPS and NFC can bring more value than GPS alone. I will be watching this space very closely and hope to see some game-changing (pun sort of intended  ;) )applications soon which brings RFID back into the mainstream.

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