Advertising

Weve scraps mobile loyalty app Pouch

By Seb Joseph | News editor

January 16, 2015 | 4 min read

Weve has pulled the plug on its Beacon-based Pouch loyalty app less than 12 months after it launched as it looks to focus efforts on developing new advertising and payment initiatives for advertisers.

The joint venture between the UK’s three biggest telecommunication operators - Vodafone, O2 and EE - unveiled the service last February when it was hailed by debut advertiser Eat as a “game-changer. Eat stores were kitted out restaurants with Bluetooth beacons to send opted-in push notifications with offers and product related content to peoples’ smartphones.

The small-scale test with Eat aimed to convince other retailers to come on board and expand the platform alongside a planned marketing push backed by the platform’s three joint shareholders Vodafone, O2 and EE. However, the plans were not realised and Pouch has been dropped from both Apple and Google app stores, while the website has been scrapped.

A Weve spokeswoman, said the business will now shift its “commerce focus into different areas”. She declined to detail what areas would be prioritised except to say that it had “big plans” for data analytics and customer retention.

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“Our Pouch trials and alpha programme yielded an enormous amount of information and insight into the current state of the market for digital loyalty, mobile payments, vouchering and location-based marketing. As a result of the insight we are moving our m-commerce focus into different areas", she added.

"At the same we time remain very interested in ways that sophisticated data techniques and beacon technologies can increase engagement and retention with consumers. We’ve’s data is particularly valuable when matched and we think there is great potential here.”

Pouch’s closure, which happened in the second half of last year, followed Weve’s decision to abandon a universal smartphone wallet that was being developed of several markets after they failed to agree on how the app would work.

Despite the setbacks, Weve has been pushing its display advertising offering, which it refreshed last year to allow brands such as Domino’s to link their own CRM platforms to its anonymised data. At the time, the business said the enhanced insights into behavioural, interest-based data would help brands better integrate mobile into their wider marketing campaigns.

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