This client case study focuses on developing and implementing a smart bottle opener by Krakul for Wecheer. The smart bottle opener serves as a marketing tool for beverage manufacturers and bars, connecting brands with consumers through real-time data collection and analysis.

The innovative device records the time and place of every opened beer, enabling targeted sales campaigns and personalized discount offers based on consumer preferences. This comprehensive study provides insights into the collaboration between Krakul and Wecheer, the technical aspects of the smart bottle opener, and its impact on the beverage industry.

Background and Partnership Formation

The story of the smart bottle opener begins in Switzerland, where three friends initially invented a fun and smart gadget that sent virtual “Cheers!” notifications to friends’ phones when a bottle was opened. After a successful Kickstarter campaign, the founders realized the product had shortcomings and sought a strong partner with IoT competence.

In late 2016, Wecheer’s co-founder, Aurèle de Bosset, contacted Krakul with the proposal to develop a smart beer bottle opener. Following a two-day brainstorming session in Estonia at the beginning of 2017, the decision was made to design a new version of the opener. During the project, Wecheer recognized the potential of using the device as a marketing tool for beverage manufacturers and bars, leading to new responsibilities for Krakul.

Functionality and Operation

The smart bottle opener primarily operates in a “sleep” mode and becomes active when placed on a bottle. Upon activation, the device captures a photo of the bottle cap and utilizes an image recognition algorithm to identify the brand. Real-time information about the opened beer is then sent to the platform, where beverage manufacturers receive notifications regarding the time, place, and specific beer uncorked. This enables targeted marketing campaigns and personalized offers based on consumer preferences.

Differentiating Features and Challenges

The smart bottle opener developed by Krakul is unique in its ability to recognize different beverage brands, setting it apart from other devices that solely count the number of openings. The development process involved overcoming stability, lighting conditions, durability, and efficiency challenges. The device was designed to ensure stable and evenly lit photos, maintain reliability after thousands of openings, withstand shocks and moisture, and provide a comfortable user experience. Additional features, such as a built-in flashlight, were incorporated to enhance functionality.

Collaboration and Production

Krakul’s team collaborated closely with Wecheer throughout the development process including multiple visits to Vietnam, where part of Wecheer’s development activities and production takes place. The initial prototypes were tested, refined, and received feedback from bars. The partnership demonstrated Krakul’s flexibility and willingness to go the extra mile by promptly flying to Vietnam on short notice to address equipment malfunctions during production. This dedication ensured the successful continuation of production and the delivery of high-quality devices.

Expansion and Future Developments

The smart bottle opener gained wider adoption in 2018, achieving a certain level of reliability and quality. However, Krakul remains committed to continuous improvement. Their ongoing efforts involve developing a new version of the device with increased durability, optimized assembly processes, improved quality, and reduced production cost. Additionally, the new version incorporates sensors and detection algorithms to ensure the accurate detection of opened bottles, considering the incentive systems employed by drink manufacturers for bar employees. smart bottle opener smart bottle opener

Wecheer’s team believes that smart bottle openers and similar IoT products represent new directions for customer communication and marketing. Brands need to explore creative ways to collect data and interact directly with consumers, and that’s where WeCheer is doing a great job.

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Krakul has been developing custom IoT devices for customers globally since 2013.

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