So That’s What The McWiFi Is For

International Herald Tribune: If Walt Disney has its way, McDonald’s Happy Meal toys could be replaced with portable media players that hold Disney movies, music, games or photos, according to a pending patent application.
Users could add files to the devices by earning points with food purchases.
The plan could work something like this: A customer enters a restaurant and buys a meal, receiving the portable media player and an electronic code that authorizes a partial download of a movie, video or other media file, which can be downloaded while in the restaurant, according to a U.S. Patent and Trademark Office application filed by Disney. Then, with each subsequent return, the customer earns more downloadable data, eventually getting an entire movie or game.
Earning a large file, like a movie, might require five trips – incentive for a customer to return to the restaurant.
The patent application follows efforts by McDonald’s to enhance wireless capabilities at its restaurants. The company began outfitting its restaurants with wireless Internet connections in 2003, and since then has installed Wi-Fi services in more than 6,200 restaurants worldwide.
By continuing to install Wi-Fi capability, McDonald’s may be gearing up for the portable media player to be a staple of its promotional lineup.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.