Diageo embraces ‘internet of everything’

25th February, 2015 by Gabriel Stone

Diageo has deployed cutting edge technology to create a “smart bottle”, allowing it to monitor a product’s movement and when it is opened, as well as send personalised messages to the consumer.

Smart bottlesWorking in conjunction with electronic printing specialists Thin Film Electronics, Diageo has applied the technology to create a prototype for its Johnnie Walker Blue Label, which will be unveiled at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next month.

The bottle uses Thin Film’s trademarked OpenSense system in printer sensor tags, which deploys the Near Field Communication capability found in smartphones to track a product’s movement across the supply chain, in-store and to the point of consumption.

The technology steps up efforts to tackle counterfeiting by permanently encoding these sensor tags at the point of manufacture in a way that – in contrast to QR codes – their maker claims cannot be copied. The tags also remain readable after the factory seal has been broken and a tap with an NFC smartphone allows the user to detect whether a bottle has been opened.

As well as protecting authenticity, the “smart bottle” opens up new opportunities for brands to communicate with their customer. Diageo will be able to use information relayed by this technology to send tailored messages to consumers who read the tags with their smartphone. This might range from promotional offers to cocktail recipes or exclusive content.

Helen Michels, global innovation director on the Futures Team at Diageo, introduced the prototype saying: “Mobile technology is changing the way we live, and as a consumer brands company we want to embrace its power to deliver amazing new consumer experiences in the future.

“We constantly experiment with the latest cutting edge technologies to enrich and enhance the experiences delivered by our iconic brands. Our collaboration with Thin Film allows us to explore all the amazing new possibilities enabled by smart bottles for consumers, retailers and our own business, and it sets the bar for technology innovation in the drinks industry.”

Davor Sutija, CEO of Thin Film, explained how this technology could help drinks brands keep pace with consumer expectations as part of the firm’s wider work “bringing intelligence to disposable goods” to create what it describes as “the internet of everything.”

“As mobility becomes ubiquitous, consumers want and expect brands to follow suit and deliver custom mobile experiences,” he remarked. “But today’s conventional NFC mobile marketing solutions are not technologically advanced enough to create immersive or customisable consumer experiences.”

By working with his company’s OpenSense system, Sutija suggested, “Diageo can reap the benefits of the intelligence gleaned from our smart sensors and create engaging experiences for its customers.”

One Response to “Diageo embraces ‘internet of everything’”

  1. Eric says:

    This is not for the consumer it is for the supply channel and the bar owner.

    Consumers will not use this or need it beyond seeing that the authentic product was shipped (and when).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

National Account Manager – On-Trade

Berkmann Wine Cellars
London, UK

Sales Manager – Midlands and South West

Pol Roger Portfolio
Midlands and South West

UK Brand Ambassador - That Boutique-y Gin Company

That Boutique-y Gin Company
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK

Senior National Account Manager – Grocery (Craft Spirits)

Maverick Drinks
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK

Senior National Account Manager – Wholesale RTM (Craft Spirits)

Maverick Drinks
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK

Digital Marketing Manager

Master of Malt
Tunbridge Wells, Kent, UK

Experienced On Trade Sales Person

Borough Wine Imports
London, GB

3 x Business Development Executive

The Lakes Distillery Company Limited
Newcastle head office and nationwide, UK


Master of Malt Ltd
Tunbridge Wells(Kent)

Sales Account Manager - On-Trade

Berkmann Wine Cellars

Brand Manager

Hallgarten Druitt
Luton, UK

Experienced On-Trade Salespeople Required

Portal Wines and Spirits
London, UK

The Global Merlot Masters 2017

Deadline : 17th April 2017

db Awards 2017

Deadline : 28th April 2017

The Global Organic Masters 2017

Deadline : 14th April 2017

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

Deadline : 12th May 2017

Click to view more

Global Chardonnay Masters 2016

Now in its fourth year, the competition will identify the best Chardonnay from all around the world in every price range.

Rioja Masters 2016

Now in its fifth year, the competition will recognise and reward the finest Riojas on the world stage.

Fortified Masters 2016

Now in its third year, The Fortified Masters will reward the best fortified wines on offer.

The Global Malbec Masters 2016

the drinks business is proud to announce the inaugural Global Malbec Masters 2016.

Click to view more