The term “box office” might become an anachronism if this catches on. MovieTickets.com says today that it will roll out a technology that makes it possible for theaters to authenticate tickets bought and displayed on smartphones without the need for what it calls “costly scanners.” Ticket takers will look at the phone display to see if it has the ticket’s animated watermark, and a confirmation number. “These security features can be changed as often as once per showtime and are concealed from users until the tickets are activated prior to the performance,” the company says. “This new technology will also include a virtual ‘tear’ feature that will allow a user’s mobile device to act as their ticket stub during their visit to the theater.”
“Our new mobile ticket is a game changer,” says CEO Joel Cohen. “Not only will this make going to the movies more enjoyable for audiences, but it will also deliver enormous value to our exhibitor partners.”
The company says its initiative comes from an exclusive deal it has with Bytemark. It has a patented technology called V3 (stands for visually verifiable virtual ticket) that’s also being used by transit providers including New York’s NY Waterway, Chicago’s South Shore line, and Austin’s Cap Metro. Bytemark CEO Micha Bergdale calls the alliance with MovieTickets.com “an incredible opportunity to showcase our V3 ticketing solution in the many markets where MovieTickets.com is an established brand and bring mobile ticketing to a whole new audience.”
No word yet on which theaters will introduce the technology, but MovieTickets says it expects to pilot it before the end of the year. Fandango also is testing a mobile technology that does not use bar codes.