Leading vermouth brand Martini’s latest positioning centres on the idea that time spent with friends is time well spent. They wanted to support this in a noticeable and practical way. The result was an ice cube-shaped device that anticipates when a drink is finished, uses Bluetooth to communicate with the bar in real time and allows staff to prepare drinks in advance. 
 
CIRCAD were selected to design and manufacture the SmartCubes because of their proven design track record of medical devices, and their ability to manufacture in the UK within an extremely short timescale. 
Created in association with agency partner AMV BBDO, the Martini Smart Cube is added to the drink in addition to regular square ice cubes, and uses Bluetooth to relay information to the bar as the drink is consumed. 
 
Communication between Cube and bar is via Bluetooth to an iPad Pro equipped with a bespoke web application, which stores data on the cloud and features analytics to track drink activity. 
 
The SmartCube also needed to detect if drinks had been tampered with, measure the alcohol content of the drink, and if multiple cubes were grouped, help locate friends included in the round. 
 
The device also needed to function as a traditional ice-cube which was achieved through the addition of Aerogel – a technology created by NASA which keeps the cube’s temperature cool and allows it to stay buoyant retaining the beacons as far as possible out of the liquid. 
 
The scope was to develop, test and manufacture 30 SmartCubes for a press review and photo shoot by mid August, and 100 units to be premiered at a bar at the F1 Gran Prix at Monza in early September 2016. 
 
James Rowley, director of creative technology at AMV BBDO, said: “The whole experience of working with CIRCAD has been fantastic from start to finish. They were very happy to work closely with our technical team, and were always very quick to find solutions to problems. Great technical competency and a positive approach were key in achieving the tight timescales” 
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