Scanbuy significantly consolidates mobile bar codes via Microsoft Tag acquisition
August 19, 2013
Scanbuy takes over for Microsoft Tag
Scanbuy announced today that it has acquired Microsoft Tag and will take over the company’s bar code technology.
Microsoft Tag is giving clients a two-year notice during which the company will continue to run in partnership with Scanbuy. After two years, Scanbuy will completely take over the technology.
“The comfort factor for the customers is that everything they have with Microsoft will continue to work,” said Mike Wehrs, president/CEO of Scanbuy, New York. "They are giving two years' notice.
“We put together a deal where all the data can be moved completely seamless to any of the customers today onto ScanLife,” he said. “They can use the Microsoft format, QR, NFC, all of those features plus everything that Scanbuy has in their platform. They’ll have much more capability that they have than with Microsoft.”
Microsoft Tag was first introduced in 2009 and has been used by brands in areas such as publishing, retail and entertainment.
Microsoft Tag did see some initial interest from advertisers, but has since dwindled in importance by marketers.
For example, one magazine that stuck with Microsoft Tag since the beginning was Allure Magazine. This year Allure continued to use Microsoft Tag for its August giveaways issue for the fourth time in a row (see story).
This Old House also used Microsoft Tag for its annual sweepstakes in 2012 (see story).
Yet it never truly seemed that Microsoft Tag was ever as popular as the standard QR codes. Especially since there are multiple apps that read QR codes, whereas with Microsoft Tag, you have to download the specific reader.
Another difference was that Microsoft Tag offered its services for free. According to Mr. Wehrs, this may have held them back from innovating and updating since they did not have much monetary incentive.
Starting no later than Sept. 18, Scanbuy will support the Microsoft Tag technology on its ScanLife platform.
Microsoft Tag customers will be able to create and scan Microsoft Tags using ScanLife’s service and application. They can also transfer existing Tags to the ScanLife platform.
Additionally, Microsoft Tag customers will have the ability to access Scanbuy’s other technologies such as QR codes, Datamatrix, EZCode, NFC and short URLs.
Over the past year or so, the mobile bar code arena has seen significant consolidation. In addition to taking on Microsoft Tag, Scanbuy also scooped up AT&T’s mobile bar codes in the past year.
The deal points to an increase in interest in mobile bar codes from advertisers, even though other technologies such as augmented reality threaten to cut out QR codes.
“We were servicing the biggest campaigns out here and we were continuing to go ahead with new features,” Mr. Wehrs said. “They realized that we had the capability and skill to do that significant of a move. So we put together a relationship with Microsoft that allows their technology to move forward.
“We have a long-term agreement with Microsoft around collaboration around Microsoft tag,” he said. “They maintain the things that are the critical customer data side of it that are really important to them, but all of the direct customer engagement is going to get the best, which is coming from us.”
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York
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Comments on "Scanbuy significantly consolidates mobile bar codes via Microsoft Tag acquisition "
Jim Levinger says:
August 20, 2013 at 10:17am