TURKU GOT SMART

TURKU GOT SMART

On a worldwide historical timeline, inventions from the Finnish city of Turku probably don’t rank as high as the invention of wheel, or even the first computer. Nevertheless, something historical is in the works in this coastal city, tucked away behind hundreds of small islands.

On a worldwide historical timeline, inventions from the Finnish city of Turku probably don’t rank as high as the invention of wheel, or even the first computer. Nevertheless, something historical is in the works in this coastal city, tucked away behind hundreds of small islands.

First the city’s famous shopping centre Skanssi got a digital makeover, making it world’s first to have a physical web environment. Then the public transportation went digital, and the city hall! Soon, one by one, businesses, neighbourhoods and other entire cities were engulfed by this movement, but who and what is behind this grand scheme to take over the world?

Meet Globeon, the brainchild of Jyri Turunen, a Finnish adventurer-turned-geek who certainly doesn’t aim low. Within a year from birth Globeon has taken over a bunch of Finnish cities and is already expanding to Asia and the Baltic, with more curious multinational influences showing interest as we speak. However, before heading to the other side of the world it’s first good to grasp the whole concept of this marketing powerhouse.

Turku Smart City Media

In Turku lies the one of the world’s most comprehensive digital vicinity. This means everything in the city area is accessible through a Bluetooth connection. Buses, real estate, malls and massive events like the Tall Ships Race (half a million visitors in Turku alone) are all sprayed with Bluetooth beacons which create a large invisible bubble over the vicinity, making it digital, using The Physical Web, or Eddystone protocol. When you have multiple beacons overlapping each other, you have a larger area, a channel, in which to transmit your desired content – this is where Globeon saw an opening and is now taking the market of direct advertising by storm.

Great User Experience

As any solid product developer, Globeon capitalizes on simplicity in user experience. Not only does it become apparent when visiting any Globeon-related web content, but one of the deciding factors between their platform options was the zero registration principle of Eddystone beacons, where audience, whether Android or iOS users, can be quickly directed to the content with just a single click on the silent notification. The service does not send messages that buzz and vibrate and is solely based on the user’s own interest of nearby environment.

Why Bluetooth?

But why would anyone in their right mind turn into the opposite direction and develop their whole brand around Bluetooth based advertising, when the world seems to be screaming “World Wide Web!”?

According to SIG (Bluetooth Special Interest Group), the usage of Bluetooth is only becoming more popular with more everyday devices switching into the technology due to its stable speed, much higher security standard and a whopping 40 times lower power consumption than WiFi. And with Bluetooth 5 coming out, the speed will be doubled, the range quadrupled and the data will be… Octupled.
By the year 2020 it is estimated that around 14 billion wireless products will be shipped, with 2 out of 3 consumers preferring Bluetooth in their products and 1 in 3 products will have Bluetooth technology. If you read these statistics between the lines, you might realise the potential in creating your own physical web vicinity instead of just marketing online.

Turunen says, “When a local business opts to advertise on local digital channels, they reach people nearby, and the money spent on marketing circulates locally. Whereas on most digital advertising platforms money leaves the country as soon as the transaction is approved,” encouraging the entrepreneurs to support the local economy.

First round of Beacon deployment in Turku

  • Public Transportation: 170 buses
  • Shopping Mall: Skanssi
  • Multiple real estates owned by City of Turku: like libraries and sporting halls and areas
  • Many happenings: Tall Ships Race and other festivals

Deployment covers more than one million square meters of digital vicinity / physical web.

Material for publisher

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Detailed information and interviews

For all enquiries, please contact Jyri Turunen:

globeon.mobi/jyri