Let’s start with a disclaimer: The company behind the app discussed in this article is owned by our own Ralf Rottmann.
Though we honestly believe it’s a cool new service for the iPhone, we thought we should let you know! With that out of the way, here we go:
Unlike airline frequent flyer programs that only reward their members when they fly, iMiles participants earn miles for travel in any form, be it flying, driving, walking, using a bike or traveling by train. Using the iMiles application on their iPhone, participants earn miles as soon as they start moving.
Here is how it works:
- Signing up involves simply installing the iMiles application and registering directly from your iPhone.
- Once you’ve confirmed your email address, your virtual iMiles membership card gets activated.
- Now, whenever you’re on the move, you can fire up the application and quickly “swipe” the card (dragging it to the right and releasing it).
- iMiles will track your location and calculate the linear distance between where you’re now and where you’ve swiped last.
- The distance you’ve traveled will be added to your account. In case you’ve reached a higher membership status, a multiplier is added automatically.
iMiles will be redeemable for exclusive promotions, special offers and more. Details will be available on the program blog at www.planetimiles.com.
We’ve asked Ralf to explain the idea behind iMiles in his own words:
“The idea of leveraging location in mobile apps in itself is an absolute no-brainer. We’re currently seeing lots of services that tie location to social networks, nearby friends and so on. Brightkite and Foursquare are two very popular examples. Though iMiles integrates with Facebook and Twitter, it’s not yet another location-based social network.
The program’s fundamental idea is to give something real valuable back to its users – and we are not thinking ads here. :-)”
According to the iMiles folks, a developer API, which will facilitate integration between the iMiles platform and third party services is currently in private beta.
If you are a frequent traveler, you might want so sign up. It’s 100% free for a lifetime.