If you have been waiting for your iPhone and your real life to collide, the time has come. Sure, we've had some augmented reality and social gaming apps come out in the past year, but none have put anything solid in my hands. On March 1, DreamWalk will become the first app of its kind, using the iPhone as a treasure map of sorts to put you on a quest to win real world prizes. Sometimes when I wake up I feel like a pirate, but never have I come so close! Today I talk to Joseph Russell, CEO of DreamWalk about this very exciting project.
Chris (148apps) - The app community has seen a few apps that have you collect things in the real world, but DreamWalk is the first to have you find REAL TREASURE! Please explain how this all works? Am I going to feel like a modern day pirate?
Joe (DreamWalk) - DreamWalk is a pretty simple concept. Businesses put real free products or 'treasures' on the DreamWalk prize map for users to collect using their GPS location. Treasures are stored in the user's prize bag and can be redeemed either in-store, via email or digital download. Right now there's a hoard of treasures on the map that would make any pirate drool, including everything from 24ct Gold iPods to French Fries. There's over 2,000 treasures in total and more are popping up on the map every day. So, in answer to your question - yes, you may just feel like a pirate, with an iPhone for a treasure map. There's probably a cutlass sword app on the App Store, if you're a purist.
Chris (148apps) - I know that the treasure is found virtually, but are there going to be any "hard to get" treasures? I'd love to see people with their iPhone's above their heads in the ocean 20 yards out trying to get Nintendo Wii's. Something about that makes me happy. My fear though is ending up like Michael Douglass in "King of California". If you haven't seen it, you should.
Joe (DreamWalk) - Well, theres's a Sony DVD player sitting on Snake Island, just off the coast of Winthrop, MA, and I've seen others in some fairly tough locations. If you start seeing iPhone users wandering around in strange places, don't worry, they are probably just DreamWalking. There's even a box of chocolates waiting in the White House for any White House staffers who feel so inclined to install DreamWalk. A word of warning though to any treasure hunters thinking of storming the gates, those chocolates might look good, but they're not worth jail time :) Yeah, King of California, top flick, rent it!
Chris (148apps) - I read online something about a million dollar advertising dare to get someone to place a new car or a free house on the DreamWalk prize map. Have there been any takers?
Joe (DreamWalk) - We put that challenge out a while back and still haven't had any bites. I haven't lost hope though; it'll happen. Here it is - $1,000,000 in DreamWalk credits to the first business who places a free house or car on the map. Go on, you know you want to.
Chris (148apps) - Last question, and this one may be unanswerable. Should people expect to get something for free every time they get on DreamWalk? I don't want to sound greedy, but a free daily cheeseburger would instantly make this the best app in the App Store.
Joe (DreamWalk) - Tough, but not necessarily unanswerable. It's the early days for DreamWalk, so there won't be a treasure waiting around the corner for everyone, not just yet. But, for those who live in some of the major US cities like Los Angeles or New York, there are already hundreds of treasures nearby, waiting to be collected. If you have enough time on your hands, you could definitely collect a treasure every day, and if that makes DreamWalk the best app on the App Store I won't argue with you :)