Microsoft Tag comes out of Beta, over 1B served so far

May 27, 2010

Microsoft Tag is an interesting barcoding technology that works with your mobile phone for instant access to information, websites, videos, phone numbers, and more.  Smaller than QR codes and capable of embedding more information into a branded image. All you need is a small client app available for many major cameraphones on the market (yes, even Android & iPhone). To-date, over 20M magazines in the US have been printed with tags and in publications including Entertainment Weekly, Chicago Tribune, and TV Guide to name a few.  Worldwide, over 1 Billion tags have been printed!

While I’m not directly affiliated with the Tag team, we’ve seen great response as an implementer of Microsoft Tag. My team has used Microsoft Tag with clients on campaigns on Xbox LIVE, in-store, and around the Web including big names such as Wal-Mart and Porsche for the launch of the Panamera 4-door sedan.  In fact, some of you may have found Microsoft Tag graffiti inside the new hit-game, Alan Wake.  The goal behind Microsoft Tag is simple – remove the steps to get at the content you want, where you want it.  In our cases, we’ve focused on free downloads – wallpaper, ringtones, videos and similar mobile add-ons.  In a recent campaign, over 85% of those snapping the tag engaged with the mobile site and downloaded content to personalize their phone.

Here’s an overview video:

The new release also adds new features, including improvements to the Tag Reader, a new Heat Map report, and availability of the Tag Reader in Italian, French, Spanish, Turkish and Simplified Chinese. Also, Tag’s basic services will now be offered free of charge. Anyone can build a tag, and embed it in your business card, your website, or however you like.

Congratulations to the Microsoft Tag team on their launch – you can get it for yourself at http://tag.microsoft.com or via mobile at http://gettag.mobi

Update 1: Updated # of printed tags to $1B worldwide based on video.

Update 2: Additional coverage on the Microsoft Blog here.  Techflash has also covered here.