The latest press ad for the iPhone features the “Tesco Finder”. Judging by the twitter traffic it is proving quite popular. The description in the press ad says you can use it to find your local Tesco store, and in (some) stores us it to locate product on shelves. Now call me a grumpy old man but what happened to asking someone for directions, you know having a conversation. It’s not as if there is a shortage of Tesco’s or Metros; isn’t the general consensus that there are too many and that they are strangling local retail businesses. And anyway, if you are in a strange (or should that be unfamiliar) town, how many people would be absolutely desperate to find a Tesco, over any other supermarket?
Once inside the store, do Tesco want to move us to a world where we use our phones to find all we want, and then use a self-service checkout! That way we won’t have to speak to anyone.
Don’t get me wrong, I believe that part of the future of marketing is for brands to deliver more on being useful and enhancing our lives, but please God don’t let widgets be the only solution.
This reminds me of a short talk given at TED early last year by Renny Gleeson, where he very humorously demonstrated the impact mobile phones have on our humanity.
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