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A positioning service for hooking up around town

Work & Lifestyle

Copenhagen-based Hvem er ibyen (Danish for 'who's in town') has developed a positioning service that should gel with the SMS party generation worldwide.

It’s something that TRENDWATCHING.COM described as part of its PLANNED SPONTANEITY trend, and it’s closely related to Howard Rheingold‘s Smart Mobs: mobile planning and hooking up. Now, as we don’t care much for global positioning satellite system (GPS) induced techno babble, we were pleasantly surprised to spot two new concepts that, while incorporating the latest positioning and messaging technology, offer an easy-to-use, easy to understand service for party-goers and attention-starved individuals. Take Copenhagen-based Hvem er ibyen (Danish for ‘who’s in town’), which has developed a positioning service that should gel with the SMS generation worldwide. What is it? When entering a participating bar, club, coffee shop, lounge or restaurant, Hvem members scan their free ID-card at a terminal, which then automatically notifies a pre-selected group of friends about their whereabouts by sending them a SMS/text message with the card holder’s name, the time and the venue he or she just entered. The same information can also be tracked on a dedicated website, only accessible to the same group of friends. In Hvem’s own words: “They know where you are, and you know where they are – and then it’s easy for you to go party together!”


The Hvem concept is patented by Danish Agito Systems. Had Springwise been a big wireless phone company, we would have probably snapped up Hvem er ibyen by now in order to gain competitive advantage, and to get our hands on yet another texting revenue boosting opportunity. But we’re not, so this is an open arena for Vodafone, O2, Sprint, AT&T, Cingular, DoCoMo, Orange, T-Mobile and what have you. And whoever buys a majority stake will no doubt get the right to change the name to something more globally appealing. 😉 Or if you’re in the payments/credit card business (Visa? MasterCard?), this sounds like an interesting opportunity to start up an integrated party card concept: from payments at selected venues to the notification system. And last but not least, anyone even remotely involved with youth marketing may want to partner with these guys, as large communities of outgoing, card carrying teens and twenty-somethings trekking from club to club should open up pleasant branding opps!


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