Sky's Talking Windows - How to ruin a great technology

Often innovation finds a series of technologies, repurposes them, mashes them up, and creates an incredible new experience; other times, it ruins them.

Over the past couple of years, a new type of speaker has been emerging: a portable vibration speaker that can turn any surface into speakers, like the TruPulse, EpiShock, or many others.

Apparently Sky Go came up with a great idea: to use sound as a medium by enabling windows at subways or trains. They called it, the Talking Window Ads. The idea is actually really good, but if you watch the video below, you’d find that the implementation - not so much. You tell me: who would like to be unexpectedly interrupted, likely when you’re trying to sleep, with a voice trying to sell you Sky Go?

What we see here is the use of a great technology to deliver a horrible user experience. Sky [and their ad agency] clearly did not think of the user experience, their journey, or what might make them actually enjoy or like this experience. The shock element is clearly not enough, or in this case, totally counter productive.

Creating an experience like this has to unexpectedly provide value, either entertainment or utility … give people a reason to enjoy being interrupted - some type of branded utility …

For example, people might be borred: tell them jokes; they might be missing an important game: bring them live streaming. Provide any type of audio that might be received positively, and then sponsor the service by Sky Go. People will automatically create a positive connection with the brand.