Real-Time Interactive Multilingual Kiosk for Tourists in Aigues-Mortes

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Aigues-Mortes Tourism Office needed a solution that would help them serve the large number of tourists visiting and provide 24-hour access to real-time information on restaurants, hotels and attractions. Using Omnivex Moxie digital signage software, BNG Interactive Technologies created a real-time interactive multilingual tourist information kiosk.

Nominating Company: Omnivex Corporation, Concord, Ontario, Canada
Venue: Aigues-Mortes Tourist Office, Aigues-Mortes, France
Project: Aigues-Mortes Tourism Office kiosk
Category: Public Spaces

BACKGROUND
Aigues-Mortes receives more than 1,500,000 tourists per year, which puts a lot of strain on the traditional tourist office. The tourism office in Aigues-Mortes wanted an application that would help provide tourist information during their busy summer periods and closed hours. They wanted an outdoor kiosk to be located in a public place and provide 24/7 access to tourist information. The application needed to be accessible to everyone whether local, foreign or handicapped, and it needed to provide real-time information on hotel and restaurant availability from online databases to eliminate the need for manual entry of information. The kiosk needed to be able to integrate Google maps technology for real-time wayfinding to the local hotels, restaurants and entertainment.

CHALLENGES
One of the primary problems was finding an interactive application that was easy for everyone to use, including handicapped citizens and foreign tourists. To accomplish this, the Aigues-Mortes Tourism Office partnered with BNG Interactive Technologies. BNG designed an interactive kiosk using the Omnivex Moxie digital signage software platform that was easy to use for all and ensured minimal clicks were needed for a user to obtain their desired information. Integrating Google maps into the application was a major challenge, but fairly easily overcome thanks to the openness of the Omnivex solution. BNG also had to integrate external data from different sources, and in different formats (XML, JSON, Webservice) in order to supply real-time information for weather, hotel availability and other information depending on the client’s wishes.

SOLUTIONS
Ergonomically speaking, BNG used two different methods depending on the Aigues-Mortes Tourism Office’s wishes to create the kiosk application. The first was to put a double screen in place, centered for regular users and lowered for handicapped users. The second was to put into place a conditional display using the native data converter function in Omnivex Moxie that was based on a variable activated by the client. Functionally, BNG then used the script editor in Omnivex Moxie to create scripts to show all of the user data concerning text, photos and GPS data for each entry – Hotel, Restaurant, etc – in the kiosk application. As well, BNG has designed a generic back office application for all of our Omnivex applications to make user updating of information simple.

RESULTS
Aigues-Mortes Tourism Office has seen a number of benefits as a result of launching the tourist kiosk:
•The kiosk application has received a tourist quality label
•There is a lower waiting time for information and better visibility of the messages via the kiosk
•There is a higher reservation count and higher tourist site visits
•Statistics picked up by the kiosk application are being used in planning events for the tourist office and a better overall view of tourist’s interests
•Real-time precise reservation details are available for clients that improve their satisfaction
•Showing the different geographical locations of the stores gives them better visibility
•Clients can easily compare several information sheets from different advertisers using a native-feel touchscreen just as they would use a Smartphone

Partners on this project included Omnivex Corporation as Technology Provider and BNG Interactive Technologies as the Integrator/Content Provider/Design Firm.

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