Using your Mobile Device as a Bar Code Printout
I have always thought that carrying loyalty cards in my wallet was a pain since it makes it to thick to be fit comfortably in one’s pocket. My solution was to scan my cards into a .jpg file and insert them into eWallet. This approach is hit or miss since scanners are not necessarily calibrated to read screens. The work around is to give the cashier my phone number to search for my card number. This is an extra step but saves me from carrying around my cards.
Earlier this week, Continental Airlines started piloting a program which stores a 2 dimensional bar code on your mobile device which can be read by TSA and the boarding gate agent (USA Today). I applaud this use of technology, it just makes sense, printing boarding passes is just a waste of paper and a lot of times while traveling you do not have access to a printer.
Jason Langbridge also reports that Chiltern Railways line into London from Aylesbury is using the same approach. Hopefully this use of technology will take hold. Maybe the loyalty card marketers will get the hint…