A new app has been developed by Ticketmaster with the aim of cutting down concert queues as well as cracking down on ticket fraud.
The app picks up sound signals from a festival-goer’s cell phone that are virtually inaudible to the human ear. It does require the user to have the app open and ready as they enter, however the app automatically picks up these signals and uses them to track who is passing through the entry gates.
The phone then lights up green, preventing the need for festival staff to physically stop and scan guests, as well as removing the need for turnstiles, potentially preventing bottlenecking at gate entrances.
It is expected that these so-called “audio tickets” will have a major impact on both cutting down queues at concerts and music festivals as well as counteracting scalpers from selling physical tickets on at jacked up prices. The system used will link each phone’s signal to a valid ticket-holder, the names of which are held by the venue. It has also been suggested that the technology may help automate venue food and drink sales, which may also reduce queues during intermission for overpriced beers.
News of the app has been welcomed by politicians in the UK, the home of many major music festivals such as Glastonbury. This year’s reported queues were decidedly much worse than usual due to increased security caused by a number of terrorist incidents happening throughout England in the weeks prior.
The app is a step in the right direction in terms of combating an increasingly automated global ticketing industry. With infamously little legislation regulating operations, many have easily exploited ticket websites and online sales. Australia only this year made a legislative move to prevent ticket bots. Musicians like St. Vincent recently had fans pre-register for tour tickets to ensure they received one once they went on sale, as opposed to opening it up to bots that sweep up large amounts of tickets at a time.
After testing use in only a few venues, Ticketmaster and the app developers hope to have it used around the globe within the next four years.