Phunware, Inc: Providing Retailers with “Multiscreen as a Service”

CIO VendorAlan S. Knitowski, Chairman and CEO
Alan S. Knitowski, a former U.S. Army Air Assault and Ranger Captain, finds an interesting parallel between the battlefield and maneuvering his mobile-focused development company, Phunware. “The common threads that connect serving the Army and maintaining a business are the chaos and rapidly changing situations that need to be managed through discipline and dedication. In the constantly changing retail landscape, a new genre of competition has taken shape, like a raging new war to be the best,” says Knitowski.

Amid immense complexities in the evolving retail landscape, Phunware provides rich and groundbreaking solutions for retailers. “Now we have innovations like high-density Wi-Fi and beacon technology, but the question now is how a retailer can adapt these technologies and bring to life the most amazing shopping experience. These tools make the customer feel engaged, and result in more in-store spending,” adds Knitowski. Phunware’s Multiscreen as a Service (MaaS) solutions help make the shopping experience easy and interesting for consumers.

MaaS is a fully integrated, cloudbased mobile services platform that creates immersive mobile experiences for Apple iOS and Google Android devices. “We can build and manage custom applications for our clients and help them make money with those apps. We provide a single platform with multiple solutions, so you do not need to utilize multiple vendors. You only need Phunware,” says Knitowski.

For retailers, Phunware’s engageME solution utilizes the latest location technology such as iBeacon, highdensity indoor Wi-Fi and GPS to enable marketers to delight their users with highly interactive location-based experiences. These cutting-edge technologies are not without challenges, as Knitowski explains: “We have to reassure shoppers that beacons are just a way to connect with them, and can help them get discount coupons, loyalty points and new updates from their favorite brands. All of these communications are to the shoppers’ benefit.”
Phunware solutions have been utilized by companies such as NASCAR, REVOLT TV, Airmail, ESPN, NBC and AT&T, among others. When one of Phunware’s first brick-and-mortar retail customers wanted to introduce a unique shopping experience for Black Friday, the biggest shopping day of the year, Phunware rose to the challenge. The specialty retailer requested that Phunware think along the lines of geo-conquesting and wanted to make sure their customers had the best options for a perfect shopping experience in their stores.


We build fully-integrated, native and mobile-first solutions that make it easy for retailers to engage, manage and monetize their consumers at just the right time and place.


Phunware set up a location-based marketing automation campaign in 50 of the retailer’s locations across the U.S. and activated an outbound alert system to announce Black Friday specials. After sending out the notifications, the read rate was 20 percent at competitive locations and one out of five people effectively redirected themselves to the specialty retailer versus the competitor store. “Campaigns like these have added over half a million dollars of incremental mobile commerce in a day,” adds Knitowski.

Knitowski believes that thinking out of the box helps grab consumers’ attention and attracts them to stores. “We want to extend our expertise to places outside the U.S. where the consumer market is growing. We have to remember that our success lies in the success of the client. It’s like in serving the Army, where the country’s victory is yours.”

Company
Phunware

Headquarters
Austin, TX

Management
Alan S. Knitowski, Chairman and CEO

Description
Providing Multiscreen as a Service (MaaS), a platform that enables brands to engage, manage and monetize their anytime, anywhere users.