If you are in the Netherlands, you are going to be pretty excited about the newest marketing technique that McDonald's is trying out - a placemat that gives you the ability to create music while you are eating.
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The fast food favorite partnered with ad agency TBWA/Neboko and This Page Amsterdam, a visual/digital production house, to create the McTrax, a place mat that allows you to use it as a digital sampler using your iPhone. It works for everyone of all ages, even if you have no idea what "digital sampler" means.
So does this mean that your Big Mac is about to go up in price? Not really - the mats are cheap.
According to Cult of Mac, the technology isn't anything all that revolutionary: the entire placemat is printed on regular paper with the help of conductive ink. The buttons are then "wired" together by silver and carbon inks, with the circuits printed in place at the same time. It is the same thing that makes used for amusement park tickets, subway cards, or even at big events like Comic Con.
This conductive ink is really easy to use, and only costs about $10-$25 per jar. There are even DIY methods!
These are actually pretty cool, however, and will do wonders for the marketing team. Still, make sure you don't try to purchase any of these placemats online, because they likely won't work.
The conductive ink itself is durable, and has been used for many other purposes. However, once it is laid onto paper, unless one is very careful, it doesn’t work. Any little crinkle, rip, or fold can make it useless.
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Your best bet is to just wait and see if they continue this – which is likely, because a lot of people are buzzing about it.