We are living in an age where things change at a rapid-fire pace and it can be challenging to keep up – especially when it comes to technology.
I’m tempted to drag my feet when I’m faced with new and evolving technology because who wants to spend hours learning something new only to have it fade faster than its debut?
Not this girl. I don’t have time for that and I’m guessing you don’t either.
So, what are we to do?
Before we dive in and make huge investments of our time and money, it’s always important to research and talk with people that have a good grasp on what’s taking root and what’s gone with the wind.
So I took my own advice and researched and reached out and as a result, I can confidently say that there are some exciting technologies being used at events that I wouldn’t hesitate to implement myself.
In this first of a two-part series, I’ll outline some of the best of what event technology has to offer.
Let’s dig in…
Most of us have heard of facial recognition before but many of us have yet to experience just how mind-blowing this technology really is.
According to Techopedia, facial recognition is a “biometric software application capable of uniquely identifying or verifying a person by comparing and analyzing patterns based on the person’s facial contours.”
The possibilities of this software are still being discovered, but these are the takeaways from an event perspective…
We all dread the long lines of the check-in process. Inevitably there are always those few that have misplaced their badge or are frantically searching through their email inbox to find their ticket confirmation. Well, weep no more because all that extra stuff is completely unnecessary with facial recognition.
All an attendee needs to do is approach the check-in station and they will be instantly identified by looking into the camera of a tablet – it really is that simple. A case study done by Zenus and posted by Event Manager found that facial recognition sped up the check-in process fivefold.
I can tell you from experience how helpful this tech is when it comes to simplifying the check-in process when I travel. A while ago I signed up for Clear, a biometric scanner that recognizes members by scanning their eye or fingerprint, and I haven’t looked back. You can read more about it here.
Event security is always a concern for planners and biometrics, such as facial recognition, was initially developed for that purpose – to safeguard against human error. You can’t fool facial recognition software. It’s become so fine-tuned that the upcoming 2020 Olympics in Japan will utilize facial recognition for all visitors attending the event.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)
If you have taken a vacation to Disney recently you may have used MagicBands to gain access to parks and buy souvenirs and their famous Mickey ice cream bars. This technology allows any object to be wirelessly identified using data transmitted by radio waves at short and long distances.
Event planners choose RFID for many reasons including…
- Fast and simple event entrance.
- Controlled entry to areas like VIP only zones.
- Ease of purchasing power.
- An extra layer of security decreasing rates of fraud.
- Tracking foot traffic.
- Hassle-free process for those participating in educational credits associated with attendance.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
AI has been a growing tech trend for years and event goers are expecting to see more AI being implemented at shows. With AI’s ability to enhance the attendee experience and engagement it’s easy to see why it’s become one of the best tools for event professionals.
Here are some ways you can take advantage of what AI has to offer…
- The concierge app – think of it as a personal assistant – is a popular AI tool that can be downloaded to your phone matches attendees with relevant advice, recommendations, products, and services. It also gives exhibitors and sponsors insight into the activity of attendees.
- Voice recognition is everywhere – it’s in our homes and work in the form of AI software like Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa. Using voice recognition at events is only a natural progression so be on the lookout for new developments in the use of this tech at a show near you.
For more ways to improve attendee experience at your show with tech check back later for part two.