The Innovation Prize of the State of Rhineland-Palatinate recognises innovative companies based in the state whose ideas and products have played a key role in shaping the future of their industries.
It was more than fifty years ago that the family-owned RASTAL company produced the first brand exclusive glass – with an unmistakable glass design for a special brand. Ever since, the beverage industry has been making use of the brand exclusive glass as an instrument for marketing newly launched marques. Today, RASTAL has succeeded in raising the technical standard of its brand exclusive glasses to a futuristic level, while creating further added value, by incorporating digitalisation. The core of the innovative SMARTGLASS concept is the fully new printing process, developed by RASTAL, which integrates a transponder in the glass in a permanent, dishwasher-proof bond. The transponder integrated in the drinking glass is able to communicate with any NFC-capable terminal device, without the need to install an app. NFC (near-field communication) is a broadcasting standard employed for wireless data communication over short distances. Once NFC is activated, the glass simply has to be brought into contact with the smartphone to allow the user to immediately benefit from the added value. Every smartglass is globally unique, enabling real-time networking between the consumer, catering establishment and drink manufacturer. This results in multiple levels of added value. Possible applications range from digital glass deposit management for returnable systems to controlled self-service, cashless payment solutions and real-time filling level measurement, even extending to new types of customer interaction, including competitions, bonus or loyalty systems and product tests.