Kinect with soccer and suds

What’s better than watching your team compete in the World Cup? Perhaps enjoying the game with a refreshing beer, especially if you purchased the brew at a nice discount. Thanks to a Kinect for Windows application, Argentine fans were able to do just that.

The Kinect-based display rewarded Argentine soccer fans with discounts on beer.
The Kinect-based display rewarded Argentine soccer fans with discounts on beer.

The application was created by Kimetric, an Argentine company that specializes in real-time customer analytics. It involved a special World Cup display, which featured a video of renowned Argentine footballer Oscar Ruggeri, placed in the beer aisle at several supermarkets in Buenos Aires. The Kinect for Windows sensor’s camera detected when customers engaged with the display, and at that point, Ruggeri’s video persona asked them if they’re old enough to drink. If the customers answered yes, the system scanned them to see if they did indeed appear to be over the legal drinking age. Then the sensor looked to see if they were wearing an Argentine soccer jersey. The Kinect for Windows sensor could identify whether or not a customer was clad in Argentine soccer attire based on a machine-learning algorithm. More than 50,000 images of different Argentine soccer jerseys and other apparel were used to train the system.

So, what happened if the customer was wearing an Argentine jersey? He or she was rewarded with a discount coupon for the purchase of Quilmes Cristal, a popular Argentine beer. If the Kinect for Windows sensor detected just one jersey-clad customer, the discount was 10 percent. If the sensor detected two such customers, the discount rose to 15 percent, and if there were three or more customers posing in Argentine soccer apparel, the discount jumped to 25 percent. Bringing your soccer-crazy friends with you on a beer run really paid off.

If the customer wasn’t wearing an appropriate jersey, he or she still got a shot at scoring a beer bargain. In those cases, Ruggeri asked a couple of questions about Argentine soccer, and customers who answered correctly were rewarded with a 10 percent discount coupon.

The display was in stores from early May until the end of June 2014, during which time tens of thousands of lucky customers scored a beer discount. One lucky, randomly chosen customer even received an all-expenses-paid trip to Brazil to attend one of the Argentine team’s matches. Of course, another winner was Quilmes, which saw a healthy increase in beer sales during the promotion.

All and all, a win for everyone: soccer fans, beer lovers, Quilmes, and Kimetric.

The Kinect for Windows Team

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