Last week’s TechCrunch Disrupt conference profiled a lot of new and exciting technologies. Most impressive to me, however, are new ideas that meld real-life challenges with technological solutions. Munzee is a company doing just that.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 21:  The 'QR Code Garden...
(Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)

Beyond the Virtual, into Reality

Taking gaming beyond the realm of the virtual, and making use of real-world interactions, Munzee is the absolute latest in mobile technology. Munzee is a geo-rewards program using gamification to totally change how people interact with QR codes and near-field communication (NFC) tags. It turns people into scavenger hunt style gameplayers with one another and real world objects.

The last decade was all about ‘virtual reality’ and a gaming experience that took the player into another world; a world of fantasy beyond even the wildest imagination. As we head into a new decade, the currently trending gaming experience is anything but ‘virtual’ with so much more emphasis on ‘reality’. Instead of the gamer entering a land of make- believe, the make- believe is stepping out into the real world to bring tangible, hands-on fun.

Munzee-activated Kids

Boy Scouts 2 (Photo credit: daveblume)

Testament to this is the use of Munzee at a large Boy Scout conference last month where kids were getting active and interacting with each other. It is reported that an average of 22 scans a minute for 5 days was achieved.

So what is Munzee? In summary;

  • Munzee is an app that can be downloaded to a smartphone that uses either the Apple or Android platform.
  • It is all about social interaction– using your smartphone you embark on a real world scavenger hunt, finding items in the real world and capturing them.
  • Points are obtained by capturing other people’s munzees or when your deployed munzees are captured by someone else.

Munzees come in any size or shape but all must contain a QR-code style barcode. The barcode combined with your GPS coordinates are the essential gameplay elements of Munzee.

iPhone Munzee app (Photo credit: eltham_mob)

What Makes Munzee So Appealing to Kids?

Munzee really could be credited with tapping in to the naturally adventurous spirit of kids everywhere. Kids love hunting for Munzees! It’s that sense of heading off of an adventure to uncover munzees that makes this new app a hit with kids.

Munzees can be hidden in containers, camouflaged or even in plain view. They can also be found at the park, your favorite store or any place that you like to visit!

It is possible to create your own custom Munzee campaign, thus munzees can be custom created to suit your kid-related event such as school camps or excursions.

In the end, Munzee brings geography, technology and social gaming together in one fun-packed app. Visit the Munzee store for more information about setting up your munzees and creating an adventure that kids are sure to love.