The Gamification of Travel
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has unveiled two of five new social media game applications based on the tuk-tuk taxi and Thai food.
The Smile Land games are aimed at people using Facebook and smartphones. Tuk Tuk Racing and Somtam Sujai are now available to iPad users, while three more games will be available in September 2011: Muay Thai for iPhone users, Siam Tempo for Android smartphones, and Siam Fun Fair for Nokia smartphones.
TAT expects to reach more than one billion potential target users worldwide and expand its database from 500,000 to one million by the end of the year.
Gamification has also proved popular among the retail sector. The concept of gamification took centre stage last year when game developer Jesse Schell, CEO and founder of Schell Games, shared his vision of the future in which gaming invades real life at the Design, Innovate, Communicate and Entertain Summit. The popularity of sites such as Foursquare illustrates that gaming does not always need the incentive of a reward – competitiveness is enough to encourage engagement. So TAT may well achieve its high targets.