Budweiser doesn’t think grabbing some beers at a bar is quite social enough. Or at least not social network enough.
The company’s Brazil team has come up with the Buddy Cup- a cup that when tapped with another one of its kind allows the two cup holders to become Facebook friends. That’s right, no need to put down the beer, take out the phone, search for a name and then send a friend request.
So, how does it all work? Similar to other connected objects, Manuel Rangel Macchiavello of Budweiser Brazil said. A computer chip with what Budweiser calls a “bump sensor” is integrated into the bottom of the cup. Also on the bottom of the cup is a QR code, which works with a Budweiser app to link the cup to your Facebook account. When two people clink glasses, the friend request is sent from one to another.
“The Buddy Cup brings together the in-bar experience with Facebook, the most used social media channel for our consumers,” Macchiavello told ABC News.
The Buddy Cup joins some other connected food utensils. HapiLabs came out with its connected HapiFork at CES earlier this year. The fork pairs with your phone and warns you when you are eating too fast by vibrating. And in March, to promote new flavored varieties of their popular baked beans in the United Kingdom, Heinz released special spoons outfitted with tiny MP3 players.
But before you get excited about being able to make friends all over the bar, the prototype cups are just that, prototypes. However, Macchiavello told ABC News that a pilot event was held in Sao Paulo, Brazil, that it was an “instant success” and that the team is looking at taking this to bigger events in the future.
As for U.S. Bud and Bud Light drinkers, the company said this is a Brazil-only program for now.
Why I’m Curious: speaking from experience – think it’s interesting that they found a way to make a social behavior even more social. If they develop a beer that uploads your photos too we’ll be all set.