Friday, April 01, 2011

Intelligent Stamps, Smartphones and the Future of Postage

Kyle Studstill writes on the PFSK website about how technology is impacting the use and delivery of postage.

Last year, he says, Royal Mail has introduced what it claimed as the world’s first intelligent stamp, utilizing image recognition technology to launch digital content via a smartphone. The stamp, part of the Great British Railways edition, displays a short film showing Bernard Cribbins reading Auden’s famous poem The Night Mail.

He points out that a similiar experiment was attempted in Spain with the Mancudos [sic] stamps which redirected a smartphone's browser to an Internet address through which the user could view a promotional video about the Alhambra of Granada.

Now, according to Kyle, "A new development is taking shape in Denmark, which takes the approach of removing the stamp entirely to make postage delivery a more seamless process. Citizens can text a shortcode to receive a generated string of letter/number characters, which is written onto the envelope as the postage in lieu of a physical stamp. The user is charged for postage through their wireless provider. Springwise reports that a similar service exists in Germany with plans being made in Sweden as well."

Will the U.S. be next?

To read the entire article, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM