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Pepsi’s Social Vending Machine sends soda gifts to friends instantly

pepsi vending 1PepsiCo has announced a new vending machine which will allow a user to buy soda for themselves or their friends remotely. The high-tech machine will house a touchscreen interface for drink selection, and also allow consumers to use their credit cards to pay for the beverages, but the Social Vending System’s main focus is designed to encourage networking among Pepsi consumers.

pepsi_social-vendingmachineThe way to send a soda friends is simple. The user inputs the recipients name and selects the drink of choice, then they input a mobile number and include a personalized text message. The user can even include a short video which can be recorded at the machine. The recipient gets a system code and can redeem it at any nearby PepsiCo social vending machine. You could send a gift to someone on the other side of the country, instantly. Wondrous telemetry.

The innovative soda vending system also encourages altruism. If a consumer is feeling pretty good about life and their fellow humans, Social Vending allows for “Random Acts of Refreshment”. This gives the user the ability to buy soda for a complete stranger at any fellow social vending machine.

“Our vision is to use innovative technology to empower consumers and create new ways for them to engage with our brands, their social networks and each other at the point of purchase,” said Mikel Durham, PepsiCo’s CIO. “Social Vending extends our consumers’ social networks beyond the confines of their own devices and transforms a static, transaction-oriented experience into something fun and exciting they’ll want to return to.”

The pop machine is an example of how pervasive the idea of social networking has become. A prototype of the high-tech vending machine is being show at the National Automatic Merchandising Association’s One Show in Chicago this week.