The TineMelk AR application for Android and iOS ran in Norway in January 2012, nationwide. An AR marker was printed on the back of more than 50 million milk cartons. The app was part of a four month campaign to raise awareness of locally produced and distributed milk and was built on an existing marketing concept of cows talking like humans when unobserved.
The AR app placed two small animated cows on the user’s table playing out an amusing mise en scène with the cows speaking in a different Norwegian dialect, depending on which region the milk was from. The story ends when the cows are surprised to ‘discover’ the user and then clumsily return to ‘playing’ cow.
The use of the physical milk carton as part of the narrative strengthened the presence of the digital world. Giving the digital world and characters true knowledge of where the user (the mobile device) is included the user into the narrative; the cows looked up at you and were terrified to see such a large human being.
By allowing interaction by the user ‘touching’ the digital world, the cows, we further enhanced the sense of presence of the virtual into the physical world.