Barcode Portraits and Other News

Keith Caswell
Friday, Aug 12, 2011 at 11:00 AM

In this week’s mobile news roundup, we’re talking about mobile purchases at 30,000 feet, saving your phone from harm with tiny jet packs and mobile barcode portraits. Get it while it’s hot off the digital presses:

Airbag cell phone image

A portrait of the artist as a mobile barcode

The same imaginative woman who designed Twitter’s infamous Fail Whale, Yiying Lu, has a series of portraits of the fashion world’s most recognizable faces with integrated mobile barcodes. The codes, when scanned, resolve to the artist’s website where the artwork can then be downloaded. (PSFK)


No more dropped calls

Have you ever dropped your smartphone and completely shattered the glass on it, potentially rendering it unusable? Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, might have an invention just for you, butter fingers. A patent application filed by Bezos was made public this week that involves potential phone savers such as airbags, springs or a propulsion system to minimize impact damage (see illustration above). I, for one, support the idea of giving cell phones tiny jetpacks to save them from certain destruction. (Geekwire)

Mobile tourism

Have you ever felt like a tourist in your own city? Get lost often, or just don’t feel like you know the area like the locals do? Your mobile phone might be able to help you, and probably already is. Not only can you report city issues like graffiti or potholes to the appropriate authorities, but cities’ tourism agencies have also been using mobile apps as a way to encourage newcomers and locals alike to hit up all the best spots in the city where they happen to find themselves. (Mashable)

Online sales expected to grow

The sale of goods and services through online channels will grow to more than $188 billion this year according to an eMarketer forecast. And the reason for the growth? Mobile commerce, of course, as well as a rise in popularity among daily deal websites. (eMarketer)

Mobile purchasing takes off

Please put your tray tables in their upright and locked positions, and bust out those mobile devices. You can now make purchases, such as ground transportation, event tickets and the airline’s products, while at cruising altitude. GuestLogix, Inc. has created an app called OnTouch Mobile Concierge that gives passengers yet another way to pay for their travel-related purchases. Just make sure that you have the device turned off during takeoff and landing. (Internet Retailer)

What do you think about the mobile news from the week that was? Let us know with your comments below or on Facebook or Twitter.


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