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Home / News / NFC gumball machine is a physical app store

NFC gumball machine is a physical app store

Rebuilt vending machine sells apps, ebooks and coupons to your NFC-equipped phone

Vending machines have been used to sell everything from toothbrushes to condoms – now creative agency Razorfish has created a digital vending machine that sells ebooks and apps.

Digital Gum Goods is a repurposed gumball machine kitted out with a Samsung Galaxy tablet, an NFC sensor and two Arduino microcontrollers. Pop your pennies in the slot and hold your NFC-equipped phone up to the sensor, and it’ll automatically download your purchase – anything from an app to an ebook, movie or coupon.

Yes, it’s a bit daft – after all, you could just dial up the app store on your phone. But the idea is to get people thinking about how NFC tech can bring the physical and digital worlds together. And we could see how it could be a handy way of getting rid of some loose change.

[via designboom]

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Profile image of Dan Grabham Dan Grabham Editor-in-Chief


Dan is Editor-in-chief of Stuff, working across the magazine and the Stuff.tv website.  Our Editor-in-Chief is a regular at tech shows such as CES in Las Vegas, IFA in Berlin and Mobile World Congress in Barcelona as well as at other launches and events. He has been a CES Innovation Awards judge. Dan is completely platform agnostic and very at home using and writing about Windows, macOS, Android and iOS/iPadOS plus lots and lots of gadgets including audio and smart home gear, laptops and smartphones. He's also been interviewed and quoted in a wide variety of places including The Sun, BBC World Service, BBC News Online, BBC Radio 5Live, BBC Radio 4, Sky News Radio and BBC Local Radio.

Areas of expertise

Computing, mobile, audio, smart home

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