Internet trends: marketing research & predictions

TrendsSpotting Insight: Why QR Codes Fail and How They Can Still be Beneficial

February 28th, 2013 by

qr codes consumer goods1 300x180 TrendsSpotting Insight: Why QR Codes Fail and How They Can Still be Beneficial

Four years ago, excited by the potential of QR codes, we have reviewed the very early initiatives that were made with QR codes.

Unfortunately, retailers and manufactures have failed to develop the use of QR codes. They understood the potential of direct interaction with consumers, but have chosen to lead them to totally wrong directions. Instead of trying to find out how consumers can benefit from QR codes – advertisers have overused it, made people waste their time and reach useless branded information that consumers simply don’t need.

No wonder that only few consumers tried to engage with QR codes (5-6%). What a waste. If was done right, that 5% early adopters could have lead to mass adoption, if only they had a good experience to share.

QR codes failed to succeed not because they are useless but because the industry have yet to discover areas that QR codes can be beneficial to consumers. Some companies experimented in shops while others ran outdoor ads. They completely neglected statistics proving otherwise: Most people actually use QR codes at home (See comScore 2011: primary location for QR codes on mobile – homes – 58%).

Why not make use of real time decisions? Consumers today are developing a variety of reminder tools to help them better manage their lives.

Yes, consumers want to make sure (or at least be reminded)  they buy products they use (and are satisfied with) that will soon run out.

By thinking about consumer needs, retailers and manufacturers can ensure brand loyalty and direct purchase using QR codes.

 

 

 

 

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Innovation Starts Within: Implementing Innovation in Organizations

February 19th, 2013 by

 The Innovation Engine

Innovation is known to fuel organizational growth, to drive future success, and is the engine that allows businesses to sustain their viability in a global economy. Both managers and researchers regard innovation as a ‘life-and-death matter for a firm’, in which the constant need of fighting for survival and the threat of competition encourage firms to innovate. Business and management research clearly indicate that organizations with innovative capacity can respond to environmental change quicker and can perform better than non-innovative organizations. Innovation cannot be external to the organization. For companies to succeed by innovation, its not enough to come up with great ideas that can change your market. The organization as a whole must be ready to absorb innovation.

Looking at case studies such as Apple and Google – we don’t see only good ideas and charismatic leaders – innovative companies are built into shared innovation mindset. Teams are working together on new solutions that were not tested before (that means more hard work and less replication). Managers involve the entire staff (down to the admin assistant), where you see a collective interest and care for the project. Lesson learning on successful projects is shared across departments and regions, side by side with insights on the projects that failed. At last, innovative ideas are surely essential but most of them tend to fail. A good selection criteria and ongoing managerial support are vital to ensure execution.

Working with large corporates that acknowledge the importance of innovation, we’ve learned that innovation, which is carried by visions, slogans, or professional titles, cannot achieve a real innovation change. In order to help organizations innovate TrendsSpotting has collected insights from primary research conducted on leading companies as well as start up companies, reviewed academic research together with practical business research and analyzed variety of case studies to come up with core parameters of best practices that are vital for the implementation of innovation in organizations. What’s needed to fuel the innovation engine? Working with companies on innovation implementation, we’ve learned that efforts should be invested in setting an innovation culture throughout the organization before investing efforts in innovative breakthrough ideas.

One of the major insights we’ve gained is that innovation can be effectively implemented across the organization once actual innovation projects are supported by Innovation methodologies. Optimal organizational innovation requires translating the business strategy into an overall organizational strategy, with proper mechanisms to ensure successful innovation performance when introducing new commercialized products to the market. For implementing innovation in the organization, leaders must take part and show active involvement. Individuals in all levels should be encouraged by top managers to think independently and creatively, and share their personal knowledge with others. To innovate, companies need to ensure a culture that supports new ideas and encourages new ways of “doing business” while putting efforts from the early start on optimal execution.

TrendsSpotting’s Innovation Implementation Methodology

To effectively implement innovation, TrendsSpotting has defined a set of core functions and processes that are vital for organizational innovation. Shared perceptions regarding innovation, human efforts engaged in innovation processes, tools and platform utilized, and structured innovation intervention processes are presented. Those are used to examine organizational innovation readiness.

Shared perceptions regarding innovation

  • Innovation as a strategic priority (benefits and opportunities)
  • Innovation serves for a competitive advantage
  • Innovation requirements are clearly defined
  • Initiating innovation and supporting it are defined as desired traits, which are acknowledged and rewarded

Human efforts invested in innovation:

  • Leadership commitment Vision: Well communicated, clear strategic vision and goals
  • Innovation dedicated leaders: innovation personas setting motivations and inspirations
  • Engaged employees that care to promote innovation processes and outcomes
  • Cross organization employee involvement (cross departments and roles)
  • Innovation agents and external partners are involved in innovation activities

Tools and platforms

  • Inspirational tools and creative settings
  • Innovation learning tools
  • Internal innovation communication channels / platforms
  • Innovation performance metrics (measurements and follow-ups for improvement)
  • Innovation incentives and rewards

Structuring the innovation intervention process

TrendsSpotting proposes a defined process for innovation implementation:

  • Identification of worthy innovation challenges (incremental and disruptive): portfolio balance, short and long term expectations, risk and success assessment.
  • Identification of innovation obstacles for specific projects
  • Managerial involvement and support
  • Wide collaboration teams (diversity of roles, departments, sectors, regions)
  • Supporting the process through the 4 stages: Ideation – selection – development and commercialization
  • Initiation of innovation projects (communication efforts are included)
  • Agile project management (execution planned and emphasized from the early start)
  • Re-examining innovation projects (updating risk and benefits)
  • Lesson learning
  • Communication of shared innovation experiences (successful projects as well as failed ones)

Here is a short presentation on TrendsSpotting’s Innovation Assessment Methodology and research tools, including TrendsSpotting’s Employee Innovation Survey.

Implementing Innovation in Organizations: TrendsSpotting’s Innovation
Assessment Research Tools from Taly Weiss

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Money alone can not buy innovation: some take aways

August 17th, 2012 by

In the next weeks I plan to share few insights from our continuous research on business innovation (making it worthy to innovate) and organizational innovation (making innovation work inside the organization).

Western companies spent a sum of $550 billion on R&D in 2010 with little in return: the three industries that spent the most on R&D (computing/electronics, healthcare and automotive) struggled to develop a steady stream of breaking innovation and  bring compensating profits.

Now, lets take Apple as an example. Apple, the most innovative country in the world (Booz and Company, 2010, BCG innovation survey 2010) ranks low as 70th in the world in R&D spending. Apple spent $758 million on R&D during Q1 2012, only 1.6% from overall sales of $46.3 billion (compare that to the $2.3 billion Microsoft spent on research and development during the same quarter). Apple’s startup mentality (even with 60,000+ employees), their unique empowering culture where every employee is involved in the act of innovation, and their ability to focus only at few chosen grounds at a time, helps them spend less and get much more in return

  • Take way 1: Companies presume that spending much in R&D is necessary in order to produce something new. But following leading companies financial success, many of them are not able to maintain profits nor produce new profits. And that is even before we consider the near future, when we will see the outcomes of strengthening competition from companies in emerging markets, all highly focused on innovation.
  • Take away 2: Companies must invest more in better focusing and in creating a culture of innovation that can do more with less.

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From “Smart Mobile Accessories” to the “Internet of Things”: Research indications

May 18th, 2012 by

Trendsspotting’s recent innovation research on Mobile Accessories Trends as well as our ongoing consulting work with mobile companies, led me to generate insights on how the development of this market can enhance “Internet of Things” consumer behavior.

Here are my conclusions:

I. Technology perspective:

1. Mobile Objects:

In the last few months, smartphones have extended the traditional use of communication.

Incorporating hardware as well as apps improves the functionality of the device (upgraded photo/video/audio capabilities).

Smartphones today have become effective tools for monitoring (identifying locations of objects, keeping track of food preparation, health and fitness measurements, and even substitute expensive medical devices).

These devices can now control local systems (temperature, home entertainment devices and transportation) and in the near future will be integrated with multi systems to allow individuals to better manage their life.

2. Tech infrastructures are well matured, including: Search, Speak recognition, Location based data, Sensors, Augmented reality, Real time mechanisms, and Clouds.

 

II. Consumer perspective:

Consumers begin to adopt basic behaviors needed for the “Internet of Things”:

1. Location Info: 74% of smartphone owners get real-time location-based information on their phones (Pew Internet May 2012)

2. Mobile apps adoption is rising, becoming a functional part of consumers’ everyday life

  • Pew Internet August 2011: 32% of U.S. adults have downloaded an app to their cell phone.
  • Nielsen Q2 2011: Most popular apps are games (64%) ,weather apps(60%), followed by social networking (56%), maps/navigation/search(51%), music (44%) and news (39%).
  • Apps Purchase: Consumers are currently willing to pay for games apps (8%) and music apps (6%). ABI US Research May 2012: About two-thirds of app users have spent money on an application. Average spend was $14 per month.

3. Transportation:

  • Connected Cars - IMS Research September 2011: 60% of consumers in the US and Western Europe expressed a need for a connected system in their next car, and almost half of consumers would be willing to pay for a connected system in their next car.
  • Real time navigation: According to Berg Insight research: the number of mobile subscribers using a turn-by-turn navigation service or application on their handset grew 57 percent from 2009 to 2010, reaching 44 million users worldwide.

4. Health

  • Willingness to share health information: Consumers are generally willing to share information from their personal health records as long as they have the power to select the conditions. (Source: Weitzman ER, Kaci L, Mandl KD. 2010.Sharing medical data for health research: the early personal health record experience. Journal of Medical Internet Research 12(2):e14).
  • Consumers are now interested in health apps: 29% of people who download apps to their cellphones or tablet computers have downloaded a health app (Pew Internet August 2011).

 

Embedded here is a presentation I’ve prepared for a recent conference, introducing the ANA model for future innovations.

Many practical ideas can be generated by using this model.

 

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What’s the Plus? Giving Google Plus a second fair chance

March 29th, 2012 by

 What’s the Plus? Giving Google Plus a second fair chance
I’m used to the idea that most of the people I personally know aren’t interacting in new platforms. That has never stopped me from being among the first to try.
When Google launched Google+ I was there anticipating that Google must have done it right this time . It was more than three years ago when I suggested that Google will “pagerank” and “map” peoples influence.
The feature that attracted my attention at that time was the ability to select the people who I want to share my ideas with.
As a very private person, I keep Facebook and Twitter as professional networks only, giving up the opportunity to have any personal interactions.
Only, that never happened in Google+: My personal friends are yet to come. They are too busy networking in Facebook.
Looking at my professional connections, most of them gave Google+ a chance and kept updating for two months (most of them survived until August), while the more devoted ones continued interacting until the beginning of this year.
I can’t say that I wasn’t impressed with the success of some of my influencer contacts as +Guy Kawasaki and +Robert Scoble (1.6; 1.1 million circles respectively). They have succeeded to scale their interactions in a way that no platform enabled them so far.
Guy Kawasaki has just published a new instructional book; What the Plus! Google+ for the Rest of Us.
As I’ve always trusted Guy’s insights, and realizing that his large number of circles enables him to see what the rest of us can’t, I’ve decided to start from the beginning, learn his recommendations, and share some practical suggestions.

8 ideas and suggestions taken from “What the Plus!” by Guy Kawasaki

1. Guy has emailed me his first advise saying-

“you should make the pictures in your Scrapbook better. They are pixelated–and I think it should be pictures, not text.”

So I did.
I’ve chosen images of mobile innovations that I’m currently researching.

2. Focus of attention

“Twitter for perspectives, Facebook for people, and Google+ for passions”.

3. Searching for people by interests:

A. “You can enter keywords that describe your interests and passions. For example, try words such as “knitting,” “photography,” “adoption,” “Notre Dame,” “Macintosh,” and “football.” A word like “adoption” is used in many contexts such as babies, pets, and new products, so the more “niche” the term, the better”.
B. “Shared-circle search. You can search for every kind of shared circle by typing in “shared a circle with you” including the quotation marks in the Google+ search bar. (Hat-tip to Mike Elgan for this idea.) This will display all the circles that people have recently shared”.

4. Searching for interesting content

A. “What’s hot.”Google compiles content that is “exemplary, interesting, and appropriate” to show you “serendipitous and diverse information.” You get to it by clicking on “What’s hot” in the left sidebar”.
B. Search with hashtags: “Search for “#” followed by the keywords that describe topics that interest you. You’ll see that Google+ autocompletes hashtags to help you discover which tags to use. When you create a hashtag search (or any other search) that you like, click on “Save this search,” and it will be saved in the left sidebar for you to access in the future”.

5. Sharing statistics:

“Google provides eye candy called Ripples to show how people have shared public posts. Click on the arrow in the upper-right corner of a post and select “View Ripples.” You’ll see a cool graphic depicting the recent and public shares of your post, including the people who did the sharing. Google+ displays the amount of sharing plotted against time underneath the circles, some stats on the people who shared it and the language they used. To use the information from Ripples- you can circle someone who shared your posts with a large number of people. You can study the Ripples of other people to see who effectively shares their posts. Then you can circle these über-sharers and try to engage them, too”.

6. Photo editing:

“The Creative Kit enables you to enhance your photo using basic techniques such as cropping, ex- posure adjustment, and color correction, as well as adding text. Google also provides thematic special effects such as hats, spiders, and ornaments during holidays such as Halloween or Christmas”.

7. Running a poll on Google+:
Guy presents a poll creation procedure:

A: Write your question, and then include text along the lines of “+1 your choice in the comments below.”
B: Share the post.
C: Add comments on the posts that are choices. Do this quickly. You don’t want anyone else to comment before you.
D: Disable comments on the post.

8. Posting on multiple services:

“If cross-posting appeals to you (it’s what I do), then you have to add functionality to your browser via Chrome extensions”. Guy uses SGPlus extention:
“Enables you to share on Google+ and have your post appear on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. It will also display your Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn streams inside your Google+ stream.”

(Note that there isn’t a way to share from Facebook or Twitter to Google+.)

My Conclusions:

1. “Whats the Plus” is a great practical resource for first time users: it helps you increase your circles of people and interests. It meets users once again as it helps them manage their network and gain more meaningful interactions.

2. Was I persuaded?
I have decided to give Google+ another try.
Reading Guy’s book and further researching its potential, I’ve found myself writing to the social media manager of a leading tech university whom I conduct research for and advise on social media strategy – that we should re-discuss the potential of Google+ and create a stage to engage with their research professors (who we currently miss completely in other platforms). Private oriented professionals seem to find in Google plus some peace.

So maybe Google+ does hold a future as an updated social version of “Google groups” for those who share similar passions?

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“Trends and Innovations in Mobile Accessories” Research Report

February 1st, 2012 by

We are happy to announce the release of a new TrendsSpotting research report  uncovering  major  trends  in  Mobile  Accessories.
Based  on  exploration  of  over  2000  new  accessories  released  since  2011  +   CES  2012  and  a  market  analysis  of  major  market  trends  characterizing  this   growing  market, TrendsSpotting  has  identified  about  150  recently  released   products  that  reflect  new  emerging  trends  in  mobile  accessories.
The  innovations  analyzed  in  this  report  are  profiled  according  to  Product   Categories  (Protection,  Power,  Entertainment,  Smart  Solutions),  User   Experience  Categories,  Marketing  and  Consumer  Trends.

Major findings:

1. The  largest  shift  in  the  mobile  accessories  market  identified  by   TrendsSpotting   is   no   doubtfully   marked   by   intelligent   capabilities  made  available  with  mobile  apps.

The  mobile  accessories  market  has  changed  dramatically  during  the  last  12   months,  since  consumers  have  largely  adopted  smartphones,  and  apps  download  has  become  a  popular  behavior.  It  is  no  longer  a  market  of  cases   and  skins  but  of  smart  devices  supported  by  intelligent  apps.     With  the  increased  use  of  mobile  apps , new  opportunities  lie  for   hardware  accessories  that  complement  the  mobile  device.  Mobile  accessories   can  now  provide  smart  solutions  that  were  not  available  before:  location   tracking,  sensors  and  monitoring  devices  are  put  together  to  allow  smarter   management  systems  for  homes,  transportation,  fitness  and  health  care.

2. Protection:  The  high  value  of  the  smartphone  device  (compared  to  feature   phones)  makes  it  rational  for  consumers  to  invest  in  its  protection.   As  competition  in  this  market  strengthens,  case  makers  understand  they  need   to  provide  more  advanced  solutions  (such  as  charging  capabilities  and   storage),  as  part  of  the  case.

3. Charging:  With  phones  following  the  consumer  everywhere,  we  see  a  large   variety  of  charging  solutions:  from  simultaneous  charging  and  battery  boosts  to  wireless  charging  and  alternative  power  sources, consumers  can  now  make  sure  they  will  never  be  disconnected.

4. Entertainment:  In the last year we have witnessed  a  growing  trend  of  mobile   accessories  that  enhances  the  capabilities  of  smartphones: its  visual  and   audio  features  are  upgraded  to  provide  a  more  developed  entertainment   device,  used  mostly  for  games  and  music.  With  upgrading  such  capabilities, the  smartphone  becomes  the  center  of  entertainment  in  homes  and  on  the  go.

The report “Trends  and  Innovations  in  Mobile  Accessories” can assist mobile  companies  in  their  search  for  emerging  trends,  competitive advantages, market opportunities, inspirations for new  product  development,  partnerships,  design  requirements,   and  can  provide  updated  comprehensive  market  knowledge.

The  report  is  presented  in  100-­designed  PPT   slides,  which  include  product   images,  names  of  brands  and  companies,  and  current  consumer  prices. At  the  end  of  the  report  you  can  find  the  latest  market  trends  analysis.  This   includes:

Market  Trends  Review -­  solutions  and  major  players

Mobile  Accessories -­  market  statistics

Mobile  Market  Statistics -­  smartphone  handsets,  wireless  charging,   application  download,  mobile  health.

Major trends analyzed  in this report:

Consumer and design trends
: Traditionalism, Hands free, Wearable devices, Storage, Soft and stiff materials, Fashion, Universal solutions, “On the go”, Wireless, multifunctional, daily tasks and activities monitoring, and more.

User experience trends: Upgrade, Self expression, Effortlessness, Optimization, Lifestyle.

Products and Markets
: Batteries, Cables, Cases, Games and toys, Stands, Mobile Apps, Mobile health and fitness, Monitoring devices, Music,  Photography and cameras.

Some of the companies / brands reviewed: AppToyz, AstroGaming, Asus, Bling my Thing, Blue Lounge, Braven, CaseInity, Case-Mate, Cobra, Dolce & Gabbana, Energizer, Gotality, Griffin Technology, Hasbro, HTC, ID America, Idapt, Incase, Incipio, Innergie, Innovez, Iwave, Jawbone, Just Mobile, Kensington, Kingston, Logitech, Louis Vuitton , Martin Margiela, Miniwiz, Mizco, Mophie, Motorola, myFC, Nokia, Onlive, Orbotix, Oregon Scientific, Otterbox, Parrot, Panasonic, Philips ,Polar, Powermat, PowerSkin, Quirky, Sanyo, Skunk Juice, Sol, Sony, Speck, Technocel, Third Rail Mobility, Twelve South, Uncommon, WowWee, Zagg.

Click here for more information on the report + purchase details.

Enjoy this sample slides report:

View more presentations from TrendsSpotting

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LEADING DIGITAL WOMEN PREDICT 2012

January 11th, 2012 by

For the last five years TrendsSpotting trends research company has published prediction reports covering trends in tech, mobile and social media, suggested by leading technology and business experts.

TrendsSpotting’s Influencers Prediction Reports 2011201020092008 are read by thousands of readers and are used by leading companies to plan their future (viewership at Slideshare/TrendsSpotting).

As TrendsSpotting is involved in re-placing the role of women in the digital world (see us at Microsoft’s Women Think Next and WIFT), we have decided that this year we will dedicate this unique stage to the trends predicted by leading digital women.

Trends Covered in this report: Clouds, Mobile, E-commerce, Devices, Internet of Things, Apps, Games, Social Media and Women in tech.

You have probably noticed that among the many predictions that digital experts suggest for 2012 – only few women voices are heard.

We hope that this report will encourage women to take part in shaping the future of technology.

Wishing you a great 2012,

The TrendsSpotting team.

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Emerging market for mobile health products

November 9th, 2011 by

mobile apps internet of things ultrasound device Emerging market for mobile health products

In the past year, products using mobile devices to monitor health conditions are becoming more popular with the first ones now getting accepted by the Food and Drug Administration.

Among health care apps entering the market are blood pressure monitoring cuffs, CT-scan viewers, and pocket ultrasound machines. The market is still at its first steps but rapid growth is expected: according to mobile market consultancy research2guidance, by 2015 30 percent of the world’s smartphone users will be using mobile health products, up from 5 percent today.

The big promise for consumers are accessibility and price: Mobisante’s ultrasound mobile imaging device, for example, costs $7,495. Compare that to the $100,000  price of a leading ultrasound machine! Images are still far to be at the same quality, but we can surely understand the potential presented by mobile health startups and their moves into the 273 billion dollar market of medical devices.

In August 2011 Pew Internet Research found that 29% of people who download apps to their cell phones or tablet computers have downloaded a health app (see PDF) to “help them track or manage their health”. Looking at the overall share of adult cell phone owners who have downloaded an app to their phone (currently  -38%) we can learn that phone users who are engaging with apps find health related solutions as one of their top interests.

mobile apps download internet of things survey Emerging market for mobile health products

This can certainly be the starting point for health related data consumption, later to be connected in a larger context of “the internet of things”.

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2020 Predictions -Model for Future Innovations

October 14th, 2011 by

Based on the concept of “The Internet of Things” TrendsSpotting has developed  a working model for NPD.  ”The ANA Model” was developed  and implemented while working with tech companies, and allows us to predict future products and services.

The “ANA Model” identifies the process where data is collected from reported “Actions”, then delivered to predefined monitor systems or professionals by “Notifications”. The outcomes can “Alert” people through a visualized system.

Few daily activities are presented to reflect the process.

The ANA model can not only predict potential products and services (shopping, health, transportation, advertising etc) but can suggest new professions to rise.

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How crowdsourcing games help solve scientific problems: Review of current projects

October 6th, 2011 by

crowdsourcing games science How crowdsourcing games help solve scientific problems: Review of current projects

It has been shown that the human capacity has still important advantages over computers.
Scientists have learned to use crowd sourcing tools to improve their research. To achieve cooperation, they present models of the problems in a game like display and challenge the participants to find solutions.

Scientists in Carnegie Mellon University (look up Luis von Ahn) were the first to use human brains to help them solve problems associated with searching for images on the web (computers are not very good at distinguishing images from each other using visual cues). This lead to the development of the ESP Game (to determine objects) and Peekaboom (word association games). They were the first to demonstrate how humans, as they play, can solve problems that computers can’t yet solve. (Google bought a licence to create its own version of the game in 2006 in order to return better search results for its online images).

Universities and academic institutions as well as private companies (look up Mental Matrix by iAppFusion) are now using crowdourcing games to enrich their discoveries. Interestingly, most of the crowd sourcing games are contributing to the study of enzyms and microorganisms:

A. Foldit was founded by the University of Washington Center for Game Science in collaboration with the Baker lab.
In the last decade, scientists repeatedly failed to find a solution to the structure of a protein-cutting enzyme from an AIDS-like virus.
The scientists have decided to collect a group of gamers and challenged them to produce an accurate model of the enzyme: users are tasked with folding known proteins and are scored on how well they manage to accomplish this task while taking into consideration the physical properties of the molecule. In less then ten days, the gamers came up with the desired solution.

B. EteRNA is an online game which resembles Tetris or Dr. Mario was developed by Carnegie Mellon University and Stanford University researchers to uncover principles for designing molecules of RNA, which biologists believe may be the key regulator for all cellular activity.

C. The Biotic Games project (Stanford University) enables players to interact directly with microorganisms. The game’s “hardware” is a simple console which is hooked up to a lab slide. When players push buttons on the console the microorganisms on the slide react. These reactions are displayed onscreen in real-time via a microscopic camera.

 

Update: Crowdsourcing games for innovation processes:

By 2015, more than 50 percent of organizations that manage innovation processes will gamify those processes, according to Gartner, Inc. By 2014, a gamified service for consumer goods marketing and customer retention will become as important as Facebook, eBay or Amazon, and more than 70 percent of Global 2000 organizations will have at least one gamified application.

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