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Interactive Packaging

Interactive Packaging 

Interactive Packaging allows consumers to engage with brands in a deeper and rewarding way. This is because of having a higher interaction with a product which can be through scanning a QR code or having an Augmented Reality experience. Interactive packaging provides many benefits for your brand as it enables the customer to get more information and value compared to the simple surface level information about your brand.


Technology has now gotten to the point where it has allowed us to explore more options for showing information for products. This can allow us to hide the design elements of the product packaging itself. It utilizes visual content with image recognition to tell a story and bring the packaging to life.

QR Codes and Augmented Reality

QR codes use a scannable code on the label of the product. Apple has grown with the idea that this type of code will be the future. Apple’s new iPhones have a built-in quick response (QR) code reader into the camera's software. This has eliminated the need to download an app and create less space on your phone. They have also integrated augmented reality into the operating system, and it will eventually be easier for customers to interact with labels and packaging. This encourages customers to pick up, engage and interact with a brand's product. Providing more useful information about a product will set a brand apart from its competitors, possibly giving them new customers. “And, as the research shows, once the consumer has a product in hand, their feelings of ownership and their willingness to pay more will increase” (Natural Products Insider). Having an advantage such as the QR codes to show customers what they are buying can help the brand create more revenue and keep existing customers while also gaining new customers. QR codes can also help save lives. These codes that are scanned can lead straight to the products information. Seeing products that have peanuts, milk, or other food allergies can save someone from eating something they otherwise might not have known was in it. QR codes failed in the first generation because of how poor the design was and how unfulfilled promises. Zapper reimagined a QR code and created a ‘zapcode’. It is a modern thunderbolt design that facilitates fast scanning. Zapper has three C’s for success in augmented reality. The three C’s are context, call to action and content. The right context has the end-user being interested to take time to engage, the call-to-action means stating what the user must do, and content means providing an exclusive end experience.

Other Options

Besides QR codes and Augmented Reality there are other options that are considered interactive packaging that are still great. “Second generation QR codes, near-field communication (NFC), RFID and Bluetooth low-energy (BLE) and electronic printing innovations mean that scalable traceability, security and supply chain monitoring solutions are economically viable and implementable and that the same packaging can also provide valuable information and experiences to the consumer” (Mclennan, 2017). This helps customers have better access to health information, functional ingredients, compliance, and drug interaction. In Australia a company named ThinFilm created a system called OpenSense. This NFC technology can tell the customer when the tag senses a opened bottle state and if the wine bottle has been tampered with since it was sealed. Once the bottle has been opened, it offers interactive mobile content that the customer can see instantly. ThinFilm joined together with Everything, who provides a cloud-based internet of things (IoT) software platform, and Diageo to produce a smart Johnnie Walker whisky bottle. “It enables cross-industry solutions, including brand authentication, track-and-trace monitoring and, once opened, engaging content to consumers” (Mclennan, 2017). This is creating a unique way for brands and customers to come together and engage in a different way than before.


Not every package uses technology to get their customers to interact and engage with their products. Some use more interactive packaging with the products as shown below.

Board Game Jam Packaging

(Note. This figure shows child-friendly packaging. An interactive board game packaging looks fun for the kids and teaches them the value of eating healthy.)

Phillips Hue Lamp

(Note. On the hue packaging the wheel on the side spins to change the color of the light bulb. It uses interactive elements to entertain but also to advertise the different colors of the product within.)


Mad Libs Style Tea

Note. Mood garden brought back the nostalgia of the game Mad Libs to each different tea bag. This makes making tea more entertaining and creates a happier mood for teatime.


Dube, N. (2020, January 23). What is interactive packaging? Retrieved May 2, 2022, from

Hammer, S., Lim, H., Young, N., & Poh, M. (2021, December 2). 15 clever examples of interactive packaging design. Hongkiat. Retrieved May 2, 2022, from

Mclennan, E., & Mclennan, E. (2017, September 12). Interactive packaging: How Digital Technology is Revolutionising Pack designs. Packaging Gateway.

Retrieved May 2, 2022, from

Using interactive packaging to attract customers. Natural Products INSIDER. (2019, January 15). Retrieved May 2, 2022, from

What is interactive packaging? – Springfield Solutions. (2021, April 14). Retrieved May 2, 2022, from

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