Photon Plans To Aim Its Marketing App Torpedoes At In-Store Digital

November 17, 2014 by Dave Haynes

photonIf you read a post in TechCrunch this weekend, you’d see a fairly breathless piece about Photon Interactive, an Indian software company that has teamed up with Panasonic to amp up retail digital signage.

The goal is to combine Photon’s software with Panasonic displays, reads the post, so that those displays will know more about the customer. That information can be used to deliver targeted offers, as well as check in, make purchases,and more.

For example, the company says that at a brick-and-mortar retailer, a customer might look at the digital signage, view personalized offers, bring up directions to where a product is in the store, and scan bar codes with the mobile app to make purchases. Or in a fast food restaurant, the customer could either order from a kiosk or on their phone, then pick their food and offer feedback through the kiosk.

The technology could also be used for hotel check-in, Photon says, and to help medical patients confirm appointments, find their doctors, and collect their prescriptions.

Behind the scenes, co-founder and CTO Mukund Balasubramanian said that Photon will work with businesses to “templatized the lifecycle of what a typical customer goes through.” Photon also says it already has 60 million “daily digital touchpoints” — which should be helpful as Photon works to create what Balasubramanian described as “a holistic view” of the customer that combines their past purchases, as well as activity on the web, mobile, and in stores.


So if you don’t know much of anything about in-store digital, you’re probably doing one of those “Poof, my mind just got blown” things.

But if you DO know anything about in-store digital, you’re more likely thinking: “Isn’t that all stuff that’s being done, all over the place?”

And what’s really meant by 60 million touchpoints is that the company has written apps for clients that, as an aggregate, represent millions of daily interactions.

The company cleverly markets itself as  the biggest name in Cloud­ to ­Consumer User Experiences – its own trademarked spin on the omnichannel idea of solutions for  mobile, social, web, kiosk, and in-­store. It’s clever because it sounds like an entire industry, but from what I can tell these are the only guys using the term. So you get to be top dog by default.

There have been no end of small companies guys coming into this sector with big boasts and little substance. However, this is a company with 1,600+ software engineers and a total headcount of greater than 2,200. The company has an impressive client base, but it’s all about web and tablet app development. The closest thing to in-store interactive is some work for Montreal digital jukebox firm, TouchTunes.

Teaming with Panasonic seems odd, given that several other displaycos would appear to be MUCH more active in retail.

Not sure what to make of this, but the post got a LOT of retweet love on TechCrunch, so it generated some significant buzz. Anybody know anything about Photon?

Have sent a not to the company’s email drop.

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