Heineken this week unveiled its first ever interactive beer bottle at the Milan Design Fair, as it seeks to inspire ‘new memorable brand experiences’ via design, technology and innovation.
The ‘Ignite’ bottle stems from Heineken’s ‘latest mobile innovation concept’, and the brewer claims it breaks new ground by inspiring mobile devotees to connect with the brand via beer bottles rather than smart phones.
Revealing the 200 ‘Ignite’ prototypes this Tuesday as part of its Milanese ‘Lounge of the Future’ installation, Heineken said it recognized that the best user experiences “tap into existing behaviour, and push technology into the background”.
Take a sip, the bottle sparks
The bottle was able to interact with other Ignite bottles, its environment and people, “bringing together interaction, data and networking thinking”.
Thus, the bottle incorporates micro sensors and wireless networking to detect when drinkers say ‘Cheers’ and activates 8 LED lights, it sparks when they take a sip, and the lights ‘dance’ in response to a DJ’s musical cues.
As this rather slick video – featuring Heineken-drinking nightclub revellers, whose bottles nonetheless seem curiously full by the time it ends – shows, the brand tags the bottle as an interactive way ‘to reignite your night out’.
“For example, it can detect various motion types such as cheering, drinking and sitting idle on the bar top,” Heineken explains.
“The motions trigger certain light effects, lighting up the complete bottle, enhanced by the swirls of beer, carbon dioxide and oxygen.”
Accelerometer detects movement
Further to this, the bottle lights can also be remotely activated, so that each bottle becomes an active light source controlled by specially developed VJ (video jockey) software, allowing its synchronization with a specific music beat.
A housing under each bottle conceals a custom-designed circuit board based on an open- source Arduino hardware and software platform.
This features eight bright LEDs, an 8-bit microprocessor, an accelerometer to detect various motion types and a wireless transceiver.
The two-part 3D-printed housing (designed and developed by C10) could be reused on multiple bottles of beer, Heineken added.