Some of you may know that I hail from Canada, the country to the north of most of you that only occasionally enters your consciousness when someone mentions Drake or Bieber. Our nation’s symbolic birthday is July 1, next week, and so some #brands are looking to capitalize. Molson, maker of ‘Canadian’ beer, is one such #brand, but its project involved some real technical chops powered by Google’s software.
The key ingredient here is Google’s Speech Recognition API (though others like its translation services are also at work). The API lets the fridge recognize voice input in up to 40 different languages, with the ultimate goal of recognizing the single phrase “I am Canadian” (Molson’s longtime marketing slogan).
Once the fridge recognizes that signature phrase in six different languages, the door unlocks and it gives up its precious cargo of Molson Canadian cans. The working fridge was built by digital studio ThinkingBox (you can see the making of featurette below), and will actually appear in functional form in Toronto during the upcoming PanAm games coming up next month.
Of course, this is an unabashed marketing ploy from tip to toe – but it’s a well-executed one, and I find myself swelling with patriotic feels despite myself watching the first video above. Molson Canadian is still terrible beer, however.