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MGM Mirage launches commerce-enabled augmented reality iPhone app

May 28, 2010

MGM Mirage unveils five commerce-enabled iPhone apps

MGM Mirage unveils five commerce-enabled iPhone apps

MGM Mirage has launched five commerce-enabled iPhone applications delivering new ways to explore Las Vegas hotels and attractions, as well as driving ticket sales and room and restaurant reservations.

The free applications are available through Apple’s iTunes App Store, and all but one are available for the iPad as well. All five are commerce-enabled, featuring both click-to-call and in-application purchasing functionality letting consumers buy show tickets, order room service and reserve and pay for their room.

“MGM Mirage’s strategy behind the launch of apps for iPhone and iPad is to extend our reach to customers and leverage newer technologies to make their interaction with us easier,” said Scott Voeller, vice president of brand strategy and advertising at MGM Mirage, Las Vegas. “The target demographic is 21-plus—an international audience of technology-driven consumers.

“One of the driving forces for going ahead and developing these platforms is the fact that people have smartphones and are using them and want the benefits mobile can provide,” he said. “In terms of the augmented reality app, we wanted to be on the cutting edge of the technology side and make sure that it is easy to use and relevant to our customer base and make it easy for them to transact on, understand what we’ve got to offer and convert—drive bookings.

“Whether it is in advance of their stay or while they’re here, we launched these apps to make engaging with our properties much easier.”

MGM Mirage’s “Vegas Reality,” the city’s first dedicated augmented reality application, merges real Vegas with virtual Vegas for a multi-dimensional experience of its hotels, restaurants and attractions.

“Entertainment of Las Vegas” delivers access to video previews, show times, event calendars, directions and ticket purchasing for all the MGM Mirage goings-in in the city.

Resort-specific applications for Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand and New York-New York deliver interactivity and content, as well as a commerce engine.

An application also has been launched for Beau Rivage in Biloxi, MS, and more are underway for additional MGM Mirage Las Vegas properties and attractions.

Via these applications, MGM Mirage offers both Web-based and one-touch click-to-call options for rooms and dining.

Tickets can be purchased via one-touch to contact MGM Mirage’s call center. The in-application payment mechanism goes straight to each resort’s property management system.

Commerce-enabled augmented reality
The Vegas Reality augmented reality application, developed by Resort Technology Partners, is compatible with the iPhone 3GS.

While strolling along the Strip, consumers can point their iPhone at resorts and casinos and watch as information automatically appears as floating text on their screen, using their phone’s camera and GPS services.

Users can virtually jump inside their favorite resort to learn about its shows, nightclubs and restaurants, as well as select “fun facts” for info and videos sharing famous—and infamous—moments in Vegas history

The application lets users buy tickets and book reservations with one touch.

In addition, users can access each property’s real-time Twitter feed for deals and events.

The application lets users explore Vegas virtually. For example, they can explore CityCenter’s public Fine Art Collection, including artist bios and facts about each piece.

Regardless of their ‘real’ location, users can open the application and be transported to Tropicana Avenue and Las Vegas Boulevard.

Here is a screengrab of the Vegas Reality application:


Commerce-enabled resort-specific apps
MGM Mirage’s commerce-enabled resort-specific applications for Mandalay Bay, MGM Grand and New York-New York, developed by MacroView Labs, are compatible with the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.

Using their resort application, users can access photos, videos and information to help them decide what to do during their stay in Vegas, and book it all with one-touch functionality.

App users can view video of Cirque de Soleils Zumanity and buy tickets for the show at New York-New York

App users can view video of Cirque de Soleil's Zumanity and buy tickets for the show at New York-New York

The applications let users:

—  Preview videos of shows, grab last-minute tickets, check seating charts and bookmark their favorite activities to create itineraries for their trip;
—  Use GPS maps and indoor casino maps to help them navigate where they want to go;

—  Order room service, browse restaurant menus and make reservations from anywhere;

—  Review rules for casino games or join the Player’s Club;

—  Email any page or offer to a friend;

—  Receive targeted content and deals based on their location;

—  Check local weather;

—  Preview and reserve rooms at the hotels

—  For special events, work with their host property to load passcode-protected content viewable only to their attendees, including program schedules and party photos;

—  Preview event space;

—  Check out the clubs, bars and nightlife;

—  Rate any of the featured services at the resort;

—  See information in French, German, Italian, Japanese or Spanish;

—  View the live Twitter feed for deals and special events.

Entertainment of Las Vegas
The Entertainment of Las Vegas application, developed by MacroView Labs and MGM Mirage is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad.

Using the application, users can explore shows, nightclubs and attractions at Bellagio, Aria Resort & Casino, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, Monte Carlo, New York-New York, Excalibur, Circus Circus, Luxor and The Mirage.

Users can get location-specific content that changes depending on where they are and access overhead custom GPS maps of the Strip and get exact directions to where they want to go.

The application helps users find stand-up comedy acts, Cirque du Soleil shows, the Lion Habitat, the Shark Reef Aquarium and other activities and shows.

There is an embedded smart-search bar to help users find content by keyword.

Users can bookmark any page to create their own entertainment favorites and comment about their trip or rate any of the featured services.

Users can check out the live entertainment Twitter feed right from the application or send any page in the application to a friend.

Mobile marketing tools
MGM Mirage is getting the word out about the applications via email blasts, social media and video walls.

In addition, the company plans to expand the promotional activities to leverage ad networks that feed mobile applications.

“The strategy is to be able to leverage mobile technology to provide a new avenue to engage with customers and offer them a channel to interact with our brands,” said Lou Raggs, executive director of Internet operations and marketing at MGM Mirage. “We’re using these applications to enhance our online and SMS programs, featuring special offers and hotel promotions for in-market shows and restaurant discounts.

“We provide in/out of market offers depending on your location,” he said. “These offers range from hotel deals to specials offers on shows.

“Just install the app and you have immediate access to the offers.”

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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