Sky Deutschland Experiments With Sending Audio Ads Into Train Passengers’ Skulls

By Stephen Fuchs on Email @StephenWFuchs

Sky Deutschland Window Ad

Sky Deutschland, the popular TV provider in Germany, has been testing out a new way to deliver their advertisements to potential customers, and it is something you would only expect to see in the wildest science fictions stories.  By using bone conduction technology, train passengers who lean their heads against the window will get an audio ad piped into their head.  The rest of the passengers will be oblivious to the advertisement.  Go ahead and check your calendar… it isn’t April 1.

BBDO Germany is the ad agency behind this new experiment, which it is calling The Talking Window, and is claiming that the initial response have been quite positive.  Tired commuters who happen to rest their head against the window will be asked if they are bored and want to download the mobile app for Sky Deutschland so that they can watch streaming video.  I can’t see how someone who wants to get some rest responding positively to having audio ads piped into their skull.

So far the tests have been conducted on trains in Munich and Aachen, and BBDO is hoping that Sky Deutschland decides to move ahead with the project throughout the rest of Germany.  A spokesperson for BBDO, Ulf Brychcy, told the BBC that “some people don’t like advertising in general. But this is really a new technology. [It might] not only be used for advertising, but also for music, entertainment, mass transport information, weather reports and so on.”

What do you think about having advertisements transmitted into your head through bone conduction?  Audio via bone conduction isn’t all that new, and it is cropping up in more technologies like Google Glass, but doing it without the person knowing is an entirely different story.  Let us know what you think by leaving a comment.


Sources: BBC, The Verge

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Stephen Fuchs
Stephen founded German Pulse and LGBT Germany out of a passion to introduce Americans to a Germany that goes beyond beer and polka (although with enough beer he has been known to polka it up a bit). He's a coffee addict, lover of wine and good times, a hit in the kitchen and editor of TV commercials. You can follow him on Twitter (@StephenWFuchs) to find out a lot more.
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