Hong Kong Arts Centre launches utility app

Hong Kong Arts Centre shows its devotion to art fans with a utility mobile app after a two-year wait.

In 2011, The Hong Kong Arts Centre launched its first pilot app – a direct replica of its website – out of peer pressure; but for the latest debut, user-friendliness and lifestyle-oriented are the top two requirements for marketing and development director Annie Ho.

So after almost half-year pilot project for the second phase, the new app is finally out: a turn dial menu brings up upcoming shows users can sync to their personal calendars; a floor-by-floor directory complete with contact details and opening hours; an about us and locations page; and a calendar.

Interactive features include a Love to Share photo game, where users can upload an image that corresponds to their monthly theme to make a collage with others’ photos; and a virtual art tour, whereby visitors can aim their phones at exhibitions around HKAC to learn more about them.

The long wait, Ho added, was to ensure the centre has enough exhibitions for the virtual art tour to be interesting.

Though HKAC’s app is mainly targeted to art lovers and working women, Ho said that the organisation’s move to mobile is to bring art closer to the public and to cater to a younger fan base with increasing disposable income and earlier off-work hours compared to their previous, more mature art-loving niche.

“Mobile is in our lifestyle, and art, too, should be in our lifestyle. So by marrying ourselves with something that is so consumed in the day-to-day lives of our audience, we become more accessible,” she said.

“Art is not a high-end entity; we are a part of community, an incubator, and within the digital world, that distance is and should be shrunk much smaller to make it available to all.”

The HKAC app will be promoted on out-of-home media, print, and eventually online; it’s available in iOS and Android formats and was made by digital agency, CCCDi.

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