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Orange nixes Bluetooth in favour of bar codes for ads

Orange's French operation has announced it is abandoning its Bluetooth localised advertising trials in favour of allowing mobile phone users to choose the ads they want by scanning in a barcode.

The trials, which essentially allow Orange to beam local adverts via Bluetooth to mobile phone users when within range of a billboard or in a store, have reportedly gone down well, but have had only limited success as they require users to opt into the program.

Orange is now testing a new program which is less invasive for its mobile phone users across France - when they see an ad that interests them, users simply scan in a quick response bar code, known as 2D, using their cameraphone.

The code can trigger a number of things, either routing the user's mobile to the appropriate mobile Internet Web site, with a discount coupon, or triggering a return voice call from the advertiser to the mobile phone user.

Orange says this approach generates more responses from punters, and is much less invasive than the Bluetooth beaming system. I have to agree, as it allows punters to choose what adverts interest them, rather than having to take a blanket approach, if you see what I mean.

Orange adds that it is asking its handset suppliers to include 2D code compliance in its cameraphones for the UK, French, Spanish and Polish markets, ready for a launch at the end of the year.

Sounds interesting...