Three new services promise to take ticketing to the next level by delivering ducats directly to cell phones.
Ticketmaster Entertainment, Tickets.com and Canada’s Rogers Communications have each developed mobile ticketing operations for the consumer-on-the-go.
Starting this month, U.S. and Canadian BlackBerry users will be able to purchase tickets from Ticketmaster on their cell phones, according to the Wall Street Journal. Meanwhile, Tickets.com will hook up baseball fans with tickets starting with the April 10 home opener for the Oakland A’s.
Then there’s Rogers Communications and its Wireless Box Office, a new service delivering tickets for Live Nation shows to the company’s cellular customers in Canada. Clearly the days are numbered for hold-in-your-hand tickets.
Why mobile tickets?
The short answer is the smart phone, as in Blackberries and iPhones. With more people opting for smart phones over basic mobiles, suddenly there’s a large chunk of the cellular market using their handsets for things other than making phone calls. With larger screens and more interactive capabilities, smart phones are just the thing for mobile e-commerce, as in buying tickets.
Furthermore, according to the Journal, mobile ticketing is just what Major League Baseball needs. With more than 81 home games on sale, the MLB is looking toward cell phones for making many of those day-of-game, last-minute sales.
For Rogers Communications customers, the procedure is simple enough. Using your cell phone’s Web browser, access the Wireless Box Office, find the concert you want to attend and buy the tickets. Moments later, a ticket will arrive in your phone’s message area.
That’s right. One ticket. Specifically, one Mobile Ticket, which represents your purchase, regardless of how many tickets you actually buy. Purchase two tickets for, say, Travis at the Sound Academy in Toronto on April 21 through the Wireless Box Office and you’ll receive one Mobile Ticket good for admitting two for the show.
Wireless Box Office users never print out a ticket. Instead, they bring their cell phones to the Rogers Preferred Ticket entrance at the venue where an agent will scan Mobile Tickets on the handhelds. Ticketmaster and Tickets.com are expected to have similar operations where neither users nor ticket takers actually touch a physical ticket.
“The challenge is not all the digital technology in delivering the ticket,” Forrester Research Chief Analyst Charles Golvin told the Wall Street Journal. “It’s getting through the gate.”
Click here for the Wall Street Journal article (subscription may be required).
Click here for Rogers Communications' Wireless Box Office.