Sighter is a relatively new application that’s is quite innovative as it capitalises on the trend towards ‘gamification’ in mobile applications. Essentially, gamification aims to make applications more fun and engaging by building into their functionality an element of game entertainment in order to encourage or ‘provoke’ the user into a certain behaviour or action. (eg ‘head for the castle, take a photo of the drawbridge and then you’ll be able to listen to the commentary’)
Sighter, is an application that has successfully built gamification into its functionality and as a result has enjoyed a significant growth since its launch a couple of years ago. It is best described as an application that encourages users to experience and build their own outdoor ‘treasure hunt’ trails, where users play a kind of ‘hide and seek’ type game with interesting sights, by simply taking and sharing photographs. Another key factor in the application’s success is that it has tapped into the trend towards the generation of visual user content such as smartphone photography. This is why applications such as Instagram have become a massive success.
When a user starts the application, the nearby sights with their distances and directions are shown. The goal is to find them, and to prove this, a similar photo at the site is taken. Users can also create their own sites for other users to discover. Once a site has been discovered, additional information about the location is then unlocked which can be in the form of an audio recording.
(NB One exciting recent development with Sighter is its announcement that it has teamed up with Google to launch Sighter on Glass which offers a new and exciting service to users which they can access with the product known as Google Glass. Google Glass is a type of wearable technology with a similar look and feel to standard glasses. The essential difference is that Google Glass displays information in a smartphone-like hands-free format and the user can communicate with the Internet via natural language voice commands. Google started selling Google Glass in the USA in 2014 for a limited period of time for $1500 and remain one of the most sought and cutting edge products on the market that allows the user to interact with the environment digitally through hands-free augmented reality.)