RAM: Jack Enables Opt-ins for Timely Content

Imagine you're in line buying a movie ticket when you receive a text message on your cell phone. It says, "Would you like to see a trailer of the upcoming movie 'The 40-Year-Old Virgin?'" -- or whatever the hottest release of the weekend is. You think, why not? So you opt-in and wonder, "Gee, how'd they get my number?"

They didn't. WideRay Corp. makes a digital jack that directly interacts with Bluetooth-enabled wireless phones passing within 35 feet. The technology identifies the phone and its capabilities, then transmits appropriate content, such as wallpaper or a video. The movie trailer concept was tested in three Loews cinemas this summer, and generated "hundreds of downloads per theater," says Grant Wakelin, CEO of San Francisco-based WideRay. The opt-in rate was significantly higher than that of traditional direct-marketing techniques, he says.

"It works wherever someone is pausing, such as a bus shelter or mall," says Alan Cohen, WideRay's vice president of marketing. And "advertisers can vary ads based on demographics or time of day," he says.

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