Sprocket has delivered a new lauchpad to ‘Chess kids’, an organistion dedicated to the popularisation ?of chess as an educational and recreational pursuit for children. Founded in 1997 by David Cordover, Chess Kids worked with 645 schools last year and is the largest chess organisation of any kind in Australia. Sprocket collaborated with David to brand and configure a Freestanding Kiosk for his in-school presentations. The system displays the ‘Chess kids’ own hosted software that is accessed via our PadLock secure browser.
This system tracks and displays the scores of multiple players in chess tournaments. Each time a game is concluded the player enters his result and this can be tracked in real time on the internet. Potentially several LaunchPads configured this way and be placed at a tournament, allowing participants to enter their results quickly at any kiosk. Sprocket went along to observe a tournament at a Victorian Primary school. What was striking was the speed which the school kids worked with the software and hardware. There was no hesitation to interact with LaunchPad; the kids enthusiastically embracing the this new method of chess play.
Sprocket and LaunchPad had a significant presence at the Australian International Motor Show. The LaunchPad iPad kiosk is ideally suited to exhibitions. Companies can feature their own content or run application to perform specific tasks. At this exhibition the iPad LaunchPad Kiosk assisted in helping 6 major car manufactures to deliver their marketing message on over 35 individual LaunchPads. Featured heavily on the Nissan, Mazda, Hyundai, Suzuki and Better Place Australia stands Launchpad integrated seamlessly into these companies overall stand designs.
On the Better Place Australia display sprocket was commissioned to develop software specifically for the event. This software collected valuable marketing information for the company.
We are not talking about the limited offerings of Motorola or Symbol scanning devices euphemistically termed micro kiosks but fully featured, content rich interactive systems that provide a wide range of customer functions including transactions and are powered by iPad type devices.
Why “iPad type” well, whilst we at Sprocket are certainly avid followers of the Apple train the reality is that most of our clients in the corporate world are PC driven. Swapping platforms to a somewhat restricted OS for an enterprise based micro kiosk solution may prove a bridge too far for many. Add to that the flexibility of peripheral connectivity [at least in a Win 7 world] and the iPad 2 in all its beauty and simplicity may be overrun by the dark side, well at least in some volume critical deployments. We love the new size, weight and cameras of the iPad 2 and for some applications we will take full advantage of these features and the LaunchPad Mk 2 about to be released [see next post] will be no exception!
Our R&D team are working behind securely closed doors to develop the latest in Micro Kiosks so what this blog for latest goss.
Apple never rests and neither do we! We are about to receive shipment of our updated LaunchPad bristling with new and improved features, many of which came from our many customers and some of course from our hard working design team! A sneak preview will show you that we have added greater flexibility to the fixing of the LaunchPad to desktops and walls; added anti rotation lugs to give even greater protection against damage and developed an optional anti-cutting protection sleeve for the highest level of security. All in all we are very excited with the Mk 2 and even more so when we start shipping them in a few weeks from now.
IPads and PC tablets are gaining popularity as platforms for data entry at tradeshows and exhibitions. Applications that store or allow you to submit information to a CRM at a stand during an exhibition is a very effective way leverage new business. Our Padlock secure browser software allows anyone to connect to an existing website CRM interface, providing a direct path to data acquisition.
However, one of the things they don’t tell you is sometimes wifi and 3G connections are unreliable at trade shows. For this reason it is sometime necessary to have an application running that will cache the data on the iPad/Tablet itself. Recently here at Sprocket we developed custom iPad App for a client exhibitor to run within our LaunchPad kiosk. The software gathered contact information and included survey questions for a competition. The exhibitor had great success with the custom App and LaunchPad combination. Our custom App kept all the data on the machine, and when network became available it sent the information to a dedicated database on a remote server. Using this approach redundancy is built in; if there is no network available the information is always backed up.
Others are discovering the merit of using a iPad at trade shows. See this article here on the Skyline website describing their experiences.
The LaunchPad ipad enclosure was used by several car exhibitors at the recent Melbourne motor show. In fact it was the most popular information kiosk at the event! Toyota, suzuki, Mazda, Nissan and Better Place had a variety of our launchPads configurations on show. Some LaunchPads were running websites or customs apps, and in the case of Better Place an application built by us for them especially for the event. Check out the video to see LaunchPad in action.
Sprocket Gen Manager Cheryl Fraser being interviewed at MacWorld January 2011. Here she talks at length about the new Sprocket LaunchPad and the PadLock. She explains the different versions of LaunchPad, their construction and finish options.
You have to excuse the video syncing, it’s a little delayed.