Scotland-based Purple Deck Media eases access to digital content – Chambersburg Public Opinion

Posted On On: April 23, 2015 Categories Filed Under: Member News

SCOTLAND >> At the Louvre in Paris, everyone crowds around the Mona Lisa, and it can be difficult to get a good look at DaVinci’s masterpiece.

But what if you could tap your phone to a sticker-type chip and retrieve all the relevant information about the painting?

Or what about a modern take on the classic business card? You could paste the chip to the back of your business cards with all of your company’s contact information and social media profiles ready for your clients to save to their phones.

The magic in the chips is a technology called Near Field Communication, which allows your phone to tap a tag to access digital content. The technology similar to Quick Response codes, the strange-looking bar codes that resemble a pixilated inkblot. The technology makes access to information faster, which according to enthusiasts, is key to marketing.

“People want instant information right there and then, they don’t want to have to wait,” said Purple Deck Media CEO and co-founder Jim Sulfare.

The Scotland-based startup has developed a technology based on NFC which allows its clients to modify the content users access from one device. In the case of the museum, administrators could change what users learn about the Mona Lisa from one computer, without having to alter the tag itself.

“People would buy a regular chip that they would program and once they programmed them one by one, they had to manually update them,” said co-founder Nathan Niel. “If you made an error, they would have to go an redeploy, manually, all of those stickers.”

The company already has several clients using the technology, like the Franklin County Visitor’s Bureau, which used the tags on its Spring into History ramble, in which people visiting Franklin County’s historical sites could “tap in” to learn more about each site.

Janet Pollard, director of the bureau, said she wanted to take advantage of the relationship people have with their smartphones to make the trail more interactive.

“People can walk through the site and learn about the history of that site without having a tour guide with them,” she said.

For now the technology is available for users of Android and Blackberry, but not iPhones because, Neil said, Apple has not yet unlocked the technology for its users. “Apple wants to find a way they can monetize other companies like us,” said Neil. “But we look for them to open it up probably within a year.”

Neil and Sulfare said the possibilities with this technology are endless: hospital wristbands with patient information, water parks programming maps and ride information throughout the park, even newspapers sending users who tap to paperless coupons.

“The consumer gets instant access to information, that’s what we’re all about right now in this society,” said Neil.

The small start-up, located in the old School for Veterans Children, is growing and hopes to create technology jobs in Scotland, which according to Sulfare and Neil isn’t what people think about when they think of Scotland.

“People think of it more like a warehouse, logistics type of county,” said Sulfare. “We’re trying to change that.”