Have you ever found yourself wanting more from your greasy nostalgic children’s meal from McDonald’s? Aside from the cheap promotional toy, it seems they don’t serve much of a purpose and let’s face it, they definitely don’t actually increase happiness.
McDonald’s, the classic hamburger chain has decided to jump on board with innovative promotion, and have taken their next step into the future by launching Happy Meal boxes that creatively convert into virtual reality goggles.
The appropriately titled ‘Happy Goggles’ is essentially a way for McDonald’s to lower their promotional costs by marketing the oily, saturated cardboard cutouts as the “exciting toy!” that children will receive with their Happy Meal. Currently, 3,500 of the boxes are being tested in Sweden and will become available in 14 restaurant locations beginning on March 5 and March 12, at a price of just over $4.00. In addition, McDonald’s is launching the paired app, “Slope Stars”, which will accompany the goggles, transporting kids into a virtual reality of which they are sliding down a snowy cascade.
Through a tutorial and multitude of folding, the boxes transform into virtual reality headsets that allow a compatible app-paired smartphone to be inserted into the front of. After converting your headset, simply download the virtual reality smartphone application and you’re set to ride the slopes.
This idea definitely resembles Google’s $15 cardboard virtual reality headset, except McDonald’s version also doubles as your food carrier before hand, and comes in vibrant red.
The only worrisome factor that the fast-food franchise is relying on is that enough children that are actually consuming Happy Meals also have access to high-quality smartphones, and are able to download apps to the devices. In addition, parents will have to okay the fact that their children will be continuously staring at a close-up screen of a radiation emitting device, and potentially damaging their eyesight from the lack of moderation. However, it looks like kids are going to be gaming in the world of 360-degree virtual reality before many of us.
Even though this technology is not new to the futuristic world of gaming, it shows how companies like McDonald’s are jumping on board the marketing train to also take home a piece of the tech-pie.