Wednesday, February 20, 2008

iPhone Themepark

You're probably already asking yourself what possible connection can there be with the iPhone and Disneyland? Give me one second... the iPhone is gaining popularity. As time goes by, and various versions are released, I'm sure sales will continue to grow and that the iPhone will soon be as common place as the iPod. Given the close relationship between Apple and Disney, here are four ideas utilizing the ingenuity of both companies: selling Disney themed iphone home-screens, a ride wait-time "web app" for the iPhone, down-loadable park guide maps and show times, and a park hours widget! Here we go in detail...

1.Disney Home-Screen Themes for the iPhone.

People have been unlocking the software on the iPhone and installing among other things, custom created home screens and icons. It's gaining popularity and the themes that people have been creating are very professional looking. Of course it didn't take long for the Disney enthusiasts to have a go at this. It's high time for Disney and Apple to make these available legitimately through iTunes. The character themes are a little much for me personally. However, a friend of mine showed me a theme he had modified from the 1920's "old time" home screen found at iph0nethemepark. I couldn't resist modifying his modification with some subtle Disney touches. Recognize the wallpaper? And who is that predicting the weather in the crystal ball?

2. Disneyland Ride Wait-Time Web App.

A what?? The iPhone and iPod touch have "Web Apps." Miniature internet bookmarks if you will, to loads of handy information like finding local movie times, checking Halo 3 stats, or tracking packages. All this information is updated live to the iPhone. So what's my idea for a Disneyland Ride-Time Web App? Simply put, this on your iPhone:

The capability to check wait times on your iPhone while anywhere in the park! Or anywhere else in the world wishing you were in the park when you see Pirates is only a 5 minute wait.

3. Down-loadable Park Maps.Although not officially put out by Disney, there is a Disney Magic Kingdom Map Web App that is very cool. It gives you maps of all four Walt Disney World parks, you can quickly navigate to attractions and restaurants and give it a tap to see the details. This is a great idea, a digital version of the park guide maps found at the main gate. If I was Disney I would get on this- and quick. I would even take it a step further and have docking stations in City Hall on MainStreet and in Tomorrowland (how appropriate) where guests could dock their iPhone or iPod-Touch and download maps and daily show time schedules straight to their iPhone while in the park.

4. A Park Hours Widget.

A widget, and or web app that gives you daily park operating hours and show schedules at the push of a button on your desktop. There is actually a version of this on the annual passholders portion of the the Disneyland website. Which, by the design of it looks like a wanna-be widget...

...but you have to be an annual passholder and also have to be logged in to get it in this form. Otherwise you're stuck with the general calendar they offer which is a real "site" for sore eyes. Disney needs to get on the widget bandwagon, it's the 21st century guys! Information should be a lot easier to get than that.

There ya have it, four very "techy" ideas I'd like to see on my iPhone someday. These ideas aren't that hard or expensive to do for a company like Disney... fingers crossed everyone.

Special thanks to J.J. McQuay on this one.