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January 22, 2009

Extending the iPhone

Iphoneapps This week, Apple announced that 15,000 applications are available at its App Store and that they’ve been downloaded a total of 500 million times -- not bad for a service launched only last July. In this week's Brand Elastic, we look at some innovative ways brick-and-mortar brands are extending into the iPhone app arena.
 
Kraft’s iFood Assistant offers a wide range of simple recipes, and is one of the iPhone's 100 most popular paid apps. For a single payment of 99 cents, users can browse recipes by ingredients, meal type, or prep time. They can also register at KraftFoods.com to save recipes and build shopping lists.
 
When Target realized that most of the traffic to their mobile site was coming from iPhones, they created the Target Snow Globe to capture holiday sales. After shaking the iPhone like a regular snow globe and waiting for the digital snow to settle, users are shown a gift idea from the retailer that they can tap through and purchase from Target.
 
Audi was the first auto manufacturer to launch an iPhone app back in August ’08. The Audi A4 Challenge is a driving simulator that takes advantage of the iPhone’s accelerometer, and allows users to steer an A4 through a series of courses. The game links to a dedicated A4 iPhone microsite featuring content optimized for viewing on the iPhone.
 
Of course, brands looking to enter the App Store universe need to make sure they avoid the type of misstep that Chipotle made with their Mobile Ordering app. The app failed to deliver on its promise of fast food ordered directly from your phone, and was pulled within hours of appearing in the App Store.
 
Any other branded iPhone apps you’ve come across or would like to see? Let us know.

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About This Blog

Brand extensions are all around us — clothing from the Sierra Club, furniture polish from Steinway and, yes, even the kitchen sink from Jacuzzi. TippingSprung, a New York-based brand-extension consultancy, publishes an annual survey on brand extensions with Brandweek. If you spot a noteworthy extension for the blog or survey, email us.

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