By: Neil Ward-Dutton, Research Director, MWD Advisors
Published: 21st August 2013
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License
For anyone whose interest was piqued by my previous post on how we have to think about mobile technologies and mobility about being more than just delivering UIs for enterprise systems to smaller screens—see this piece on The Verge.
Audi has introduced another augmented reality (AR) iOS app, this time aimed at helping owners of new A3 models find their way around the various features, displays and warnings that the car creates.
So far, so cute.
But—what if this app were to collect metrics about its use (in the same way that websites track visitors)?
I should declare that the app might in fact do this already—I’m not privy to its construction. This is more of a thought experiment.
Premium marques like Audi in particular want to keep pushing design to the forefront of their propositions. An aggregate data set that highlights the features of a car model that customers most want to find more about, or most find confusing, would be a potentially very valuable tool for Audi.
It would help to create a tight feedback loop between the product—which of course is sold at-a-distance from Audi, through a dealer network; and is financed through other separate companies, in many cases—and the design team. It would help Audi build products that are more intuitive to use. It also potentially throws up lots of ideas for complementary premium services that Audi or its partners could offer.
Mobile apps, and the data they create—particularly when combined with AR and scanning technologies that can feature in apps on modern smartphones and tablets—create powerful platforms to connect physical products with virtual services and so create much tighter, more immediate relationships between suppliers and customers.
We’re only on the start of this journey. I find the implications of all this—both on business model innovation and then on the management systems that businesses will have to reinvent to cope with the changes wrought—completely fascinating.
What about you?
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