This case study was developed and showcased as part of the Digital 5 (D5) 4th annual gathering held in New Zealand in February 2018. Mixt were honoured to be invited and show the power of government and private sector collaboration.

Augmenting the NZ General Election

In March last year, Te Puni Kōkiri developed the FFSVote (For Future’s Sake) Vote a social media and community engagement campaign designed to encourage rangatahi aged 18 – 29 to enrol and vote at the 2017 General Election.

Let’s be honest. General Elections are not the most exciting thing for 18 – 29-year-olds. So for us to capture their attention and get them interested, we needed to be bold and take an ordinary channel (social media) and make it extraordinary.

We did this by using augmented reality

Leveraging off the popularity of the well-known social media influencer, William Waiirua, Mixt designed and developed the Augmented World of William Waiirua.

Using an illustrated William Waiirua marker card, those with who downloaded the free William Waiirua app could place their phones or tablets over the card and a moving image of William Waiirua would appear infusing his popular dance moves and phrases with key messages about voting at the 2017 General election.

How does the technology work?

AR is a composite view of digitally generated images overlaid onto reality, usually through a phone or tablet.

There are already numerous successful augmented reality apps such as the popular photo-sharing app Snapchat with its AR filters and the game Pokémon Go. As AR is now becoming mainstream with regular use on mobile phones AR is about to explode.

What is the future of the technology?

Augmented Reality is quickly becoming part of everyday life – with AR displays embedded into military helmet displays, car windshields, and recently regular looking glasses. In the coming years, AR contact lenses will be able to translate all languages for you, interpret equations, predict motion and physics with precision, and even give you the ability to read body-language to analyse others’ inner monologues.

The Internet’s entire wealth of knowledge will be woven through glasses and contact lenses with the real world. This mixed reality will be computed, analysed, and finally superimposed to the user to give a staggering new view of the world around us.

What did we achieve by using this technology?

We took our users on a digital journey where we started a dialogue through social media. The conversations began as general comments then as the campaign progressed we saw a change in our audience as they started to encourage their peers to vote. Exactly what we wanted.

Overall there was an increase in voter turnout for our target demographic (Māori aged 18-29) by 6.6% from 55.2% to 61.8%