5 Things You Didn’t Know Your Wristband Could Do

Everyone has worn a wristband at some point. Whether to enter a music festival, a nightclub or an aquatic centre, they are something we’re all used to. Boring old wristbands just sitting there wrapped around your wrist. Very wrong! Like Homer discovering the use of trees “It’s about time trees were good for something, instead of just standing there like jerks!”, AAC hereby presents 5 things your wristband can do that you didn’t know.

1. Your wristband can upload photos to Facebook!

In conjunction with RFID or barcode technology, your wristband can help upload photos to Facebook. This has proven especially popular at University Open Days in recent years, where the University is aiming to increase the engagement of their prospective students with the University itself. How does this work though? Each prospective student who attends the event is assigned RFID wristbands, barcoded wristbands or cards, which is registered to them. Throughout the day, a photographer can take photos via a smartphone and then simply scan the wristband or card of each person in the photos, automatically uploading this photo to Facebook, Instagram, BuzzFaceaGramer or whatever is the newest social media tool. The key to this is the system used to manage registrations, with some excellent options out there now; for recommendations, drop us a line.

Wherever wristbands can be used to increase engagement between a business and a potential consumer, member, existing customer, this is a great advancement.

2. Your wristband can buy food and drinks!

Whilst you will still need to be attached to your wristband for the wristband to accomplish this feat, it is still interesting! Again, through the use of RFID or barcode technology, wristbands can be registered to a individual who then loads money uploaded to their profile within the system. When you wish to purchase something, most likely at a music festival or a water park, a simple swipe of the wristband charges your profile the right amount. The benefits of cashless transactions have long been debated amongst both festival management and festival attendees, with no clear answer really prevailing.

The problem for festival management when looking at cashless transactions is this: what happens if the system crashes and suddenly F&B spend halts for 30mins, 60mins or longer? The potential losses are immense, and many festival rely on revenue from food and drink spending to cover their significant running costs.

For festival attendees, there is always been a feeling of propriety and tradition when it comes to their festival activities; there has been backlash against RFID wristbands to manage access control, as there has against cashless transactions, with festival goers feeling that it is taking the industry in the wrong direction and that it goes against traditional festival ideals.

With regards to cashless transactions, there is an additional security benefit; your photo can also be assigned to your profile, so if someone somehow comes across your wristband, when they try to spend money your photo will appear, allowing the cashier to recognise the fraud immediately. This is also a great way to prevent underage drinking at events without needing to continually check ID.

3. Your wristband can be a secret agent!

Shhh, this one’s a little hush hush. The newest advancements in wristband technology mean that micro text and even invisible text can be added to certain wristbands, allowing for special security checks to be undertaken. Keep this on the down low.

The main benefits here relate to security, especially at venues like nightclubs and music festivals, where additional security features can mean the difference between spotting a fake wristband or not. Forgeries are becoming more and more advanced, and appearing at venues and events faster than ever before. Small steps like this that can make it harder for forgeries to appear are very welcome to the industry, and should be encouraged.

4. Your wristband wins you things!

Treasure hunts and similar activities at conferences, exhibitions and networking events are proving popular. Driven by RFID or barcoded wristbands, participants are challenged to “check in” or scan their wristband at, perhaps, 5 different locations; this may be specific booths, conferences, break out rooms etc. As a reward, once the 5 scans have been undertaken, the user receives an SMS or email letting them know they can now enjoy a 10% discount at the bar.

Likewise, at music festivals, more and more sponsors are setting up booths that utilise RFID or barcoded technology with the goal of allowing patrons to enter competitions with the simple swipe of their wristband. Beware though, the goal of these sponsors is to collect your data for future marketing purposes, but the point remains – a simple swipe of your wristband could win you a car!

5. Your wristband can keep you safe

As we reported in a recent article here, wristbands are being used to keep people safe. Equipped with GPS trackers, wristbands can be used for people deemed ‘at risk’ for potential leaving specific areas losing contact with carers or loved ones. Services have started that manage this exact process, with response units available to prevent such incidents.

Wristbands are changing, with some very specific now becoming very clear in 2014. Whilst the simple wristbands of today will continue to play a role in identification and security at events, venues, parties etc, a new wave of wristbands are now readily available to anyone who wants to turn a simple product in to one that achieves more than you might have imagined.

The digitalisation of wristbands is something we’ll review in more detail later this month, but it is a trend and advancement that is having dramatic effects on the industry, whether it relates to the use of full colour artwork, variable data, overprinting, barcodes, unique non sequential numbering, special security features or RFID inlays.

As a leader in this field AAC is pushing the boundaries to see what is possible. It really comes down to your imagination to determine what can be done.

Talk to AAC to discuss your ideas, or ask us for some; we’d be happy to help of course.

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