Shopper Innovation Awards: Intel escapes to Mars inside Best Buy

The brand created an augmented reality game for its experiential zone inside the retailer.

This story appears in the April/May 2016 issue of strategy.

Gold: In-store engagement

In October 2014, Intel launched the “Intel Experience at Best Buy” in 50 different stores. The experiential environment invited shoppers to interact and test new technologies, such as 3D printing and augmented reality, using Intel devices.

Working with tech production companies Current Studios and Arc Worldwide, with Leo Burnett on creative, the brand launched Mars Escape, an augmented reality game that people visiting the Intel Experience zone could play. It was one of three activations inside the stores and allowed people to drive one of three virtual Rovers over a physical replica of Mars. With an impending asteroid collision heading for Mars, the goal was to collect power pods to help launch the Rover off the red planet.

The app used edge detection and extended tracking computer vision, which allowed the Rover to understand and interact dynamically with every crevice of the rugged terrain. In addition to the app, Current also produced several animated segments that were used in promotional videos for Mars Escape and which ran in-store and online.

The goal of the app was to highlight the power and quality of the Intel chips and to demonstrate that they’re able to power something as robust and remote as an actual Mars Rover, as well as the tablets that consumers were using in the Intel Experience zone.

The Mars Escape app was voted one of the best activations in the Intel zone by thousands of consumers and the average engagement time was 11 minutes.

Advertiser | Intel
Agency | Leo Burnett
Production companies | Current Studios, Arc Worldwide
President | Nathan Kroll
VP creative technology | Steve Martell
VP operations | Matt Fegan
Senior developer | Matt MacDonald
Senior animator | San Mathew
Animator | Jon Eisener
Designer | Stephanie Munn