The holidays have become a whole lot more digital. Now, an excellent internet connection is as essential to holiday planning as decorating the tree. Here are a few of the ways businesses are using technology to enhance the holidays.
A major part of the festive season is an outing to see the Nutcracker, Handel’s Messiah, or a funny pantomime. But more and more, these performances are getting streamed over the internet. And why not? Doing so increases the potential audience to include people who live far away, people who aren’t well enough for a night out, or people who just prefer the comfort of their own homes. Also, some filmed performances are being treated like live events, such as Against the Grain theatre’s award-winning performance of Messiah.
You made your dreidel out of clay? Well, your kids can just download theirs from the app store. The app store is also full of Christmas apps. Many are Christmas-themed games and photo filters, but even Norad is offering their Santa tracker in app form.
Retail stores have had their own apps for years, but now they’re starting to offer real value to shoppers. They offer personalized coupons, in-app payment, and can arrange pickup or delivery. And far from killing brick-and-mortar retail, retail apps are augmenting the customer experience. Businesses are using iBeacons to offer shoppers deals, notifications, and location-based marketing when shoppers who’ve downloaded their apps are in range of their stores.
No cash but want to spread some holiday cheer when you see Salvation Army volunteers ringing their bells? Good news—you don’t necessarily have to drop cash into those red kettles anymore. Since pioneering tap-and-go credit card donations in 2019, the Salvation Army has expanded the program to most of the country.
What if the sweater you just put on were blue instead of purple? If the store you’re in is equipped with an augmented reality mirror, you can simply change the colour in the mirror without actually changing your sweater. Clothing retailers can use AR mirrors to show customers different colours, sizes, and styles.
Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and other video-calling apps that are strongly associated with work culture are the same apps that let Grandma and Grandpa spend time with their grandkids over the holidays. And with the growing importance of these apps, ISPs are more important than ever in delivering happy holidays to families across the country. Delivering high-speed, low-latency internet is not just about business—now it’s essential for families who want to celebrate together even when they’re far apart.
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