The true meaning of texts can often get lost in delivery. 2MEE aims to change that with its face-to-face communications technology—how could it get brands to move on from texted push notifications?
2MEE turned to IBM Cloud to power its Facee messaging technology, which puts the human face at the front and center of communications, from push notifications to chats.
Personalizedand engaging messages help brands seize user attention
Easy scalabilitymeans 2MEE can grow its business without limits
Powerfulcloud platform supports rapid, reliable app performance
Business challenge story
Restoring the connection
Digital technology has made it quicker and easier for us to connect than ever before. Yet, as we come to rely more and more on text messages and email to communicate with one another, the human element can all too often get lost between the lines.
2MEE spotted an opportunity to humanize digital connectivity, by putting people at the front and center of digital communications. The company’s co-founder, Dave Soppelsa, elaborates: “When we have a face-to-face conversation, there are so many facial and verbal cues that we rely on to understand the full meaning of what the other person is saying. Those same cues get lost when we rely solely on written communication, making it all too easy for us to misinterpret the tone of someone’s message.
“We recognized that many of the ways in which we communicate today have largely lost the essence of human interaction, and we wanted to bring people back to the fore. We saw how other companies were using augmented reality [AR] to place artificially generated virtual objects into the real world. We thought it could be even better to flip that concept around, and use AR to effectively transport humans from one reality to another.”
We achieved our goal and have patents for human AR, so we then turned our attention to the creation of Facee: a digital process that uses proprietary algorithms to separate human full faces from their background surroundings and transmit that segment as a living message.
The potential applications are vast: B2C companies can use Facee notifications in place of traditional push notifications, delivering personalized messages and offers, and broadcasters can send live updates as news breaks or key sporting moments occur. Live or pre-recorded, Facee notifications can land on any device—phone, smart watch or desktop—offering a unique and eye-catching way for brands to interact with their customers.
As 2MEE started to turn its innovative solution into a compelling commercial offering, the company knew that choosing the right technology platform would be key to success.
Dave Soppelsa explains: “We needed a stable, scalable back-end platform to support Facee; one that allowed us to deliver messages securely and in real-time, anywhere in the world. We definitely wanted a cloud solution—we have a very lean team, and our strength lies in development, not infrastructure management, so choosing cloud would save us valuable time, expense and effort.”
The sky is the limit
After evaluating offerings from several cloud providers, 2MEE chose IBM Cloud to support the Facee app. “IBM instantly understood our vision for Facee and was genuinely excited about the concept,” recalls Dave Soppelsa. “With IBM, we didn’t just get a cloud services provider, we found a true partner.”
2MEE worked closely with an IBM Cloud Garage team in London to build the back-end for its solution. This included creating the 2MEE Exchange—a gateway running on the IBM Cloud platform that stores Facee messages, using the flexible IBM Cloud Object Storage service, and pushes them out to any enabled device.
In addition, 2MEE has leveraged database services from the IBM Cloud catalog to securely integrate data from clients’ customer relationship management (CRM) systems with Facee. This enables clients to create sophisticated campaigns for targeting different customer segments; for example, ahead of a key soccer match, a sports broadcaster can segment users who previously used its app to check soccer scores, and send them pre-match analysis and live updates—boosting their engagement.
Dave Soppelsa notes: “Choosing IBM Cloud has given us access to a really rich set of services and APIs that have allowed us to take Facee to the next level. Plus, the IBM Cloud Garage team has been second-to-none. Their knowledge and support has been invaluable to us as we’ve moved forward on this journey. The team has been incredibly responsive when we have a question or need help, and they are also very proactive in making recommendations and giving advice. IBM is truly committed to this partnership and I don’t think we would have been able to achieve everything we have without that kind of personal engagement.”
Working with IBM, 2MEE has transformed Facee into a highly polished and stable product, and brands are already lining up to make use of this disruptive technology. One of Facee’s first customers is an online gaming company, which will be harnessing the solution to send personalized notifications to customers—shaping a more interactive and engaging experience to help strengthen player retention.
By choosing the IBM Cloud platform, 2MEE was able to avoid the expense and effort of setting up and managing in-house infrastructure, all while gaining access to expert IBM resources and cutting-edge technologies.
“It was quick and easy for us to get up and running in the IBM Cloud,” confirms Dave Soppelsa. “We didn’t have to worry about selecting and installing supporting IT systems, and IBM handles much of the ongoing management, which means that we are free to innovate and find ways to make our offering even better. We also see that IBM is really invested in developing the cloud platform; many new cloud services have come online since we started this process, and we’ve been making use of quite a few of them ourselves. It’s an exciting time to be an IBM Cloud customer, and we’re looking forward to seeing what the future has in store for the platform.”
2MEE has big ambitions for its offering—beyond Facee notifications, the company has many other applications for AR technology already patented and others on its roadmap. These include Facee Chat, a group chat platform that allows users to communicate face to face and an upcoming Facee for Business conference call tool is in the planning.
As 2MEE expands its range of offerings and customer base, the company can count on IBM Cloud to provide a stable, scalable platform for supporting this growth.
“We’ve been working hard to make Facee something very special,” says Dave Soppelsa. “Now that we’re ready to go to market, having IBM behind us will be a real asset. With IBM Cloud, we have a secure, stable and scalable platform that can grow with our business. And partnering with IBM opens us up to a huge base of partners and potential customers. IBM has made the journey to cloud easy, and we look forward to making the most of all the opportunities ahead of us.”
2MEE is a mixed reality communications company that has developed patented technology to put humans into the center ground of communications - just as nature intended. 2MEE has developed complex algorithms that allow people to be segmented from their background, and transmitted as a face message. Founded in 2012, 2MEE is headquartered in York, England.