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A very expensive iRound

Posted by putsimply on 29th October 2008

Since our previous blog about the best apps on iPhones, I have been fortunate enough to get me one (actually getting the phone out of the clutches of the shop ‘assistant’ and then getting it to connect to the network is another story for another blog). Whilst I’ve not been able to use the handset as an actual phone as yet, I have been able to drive my husband crazy by connecting to the wireless network in my house and downloading some of the free apps.

One of the novelty apps which, I have to say, rapidly became dull after the fist couple of uses, was the iPint. Little did I know however, that this application was the cause of so much trouble in the US. It seems that the people who collaborated with Carling to bring this free app to our ‘iScreens’ – London-based Beattie McGuinness Bungay – are being sued by a company called Hottrix, who claim to have developed the original application, which they called the iBeer.

I can’t comment on the ins and outs of a law suit, all I know is what I’ve read in the news (so it must be true). However, I’m a little puzzled that Hottrix are claiming that they lost revenue because of iPint – they are apparently charging $3 per download, whilst the iPint is a free download.

Now, whilst I’m happy to download this silly application for free, there is absolutely no way I would ever have considered paying for it, so even without the iPint I can’t see how this application would ever have made any money. I wonder if, rather than spending time chasing after Carling’s parent company for $12.5 million, Hottrix might be better off speaking to the clever marketing company who saw that there was an opportunity to work with an established beer brand, to help them promote their product, allow iPhone users to have some free fun and, no doubt, get paid handsomely along the way.

Can I suggest that Guinness would be the perfect target for the next iPint (or iBeer). Or maybe they could team up with Starbucks to create an iSkinnyLatte? Or McDonalds could create an iMcThickshake?