Ribbit has partnered with Best Buy to display yet another way in which its phone service can be integrated for a unique solution that makes so much sense in hindsight. Using Best Buy’s recently released Remix API, Ribbit has created an application Called Consumers Price that allows consumers to make shopping on Best Buy a little bit more social, and a lot easier to do. It’s called social mobile commerce, and it combines the best of both worlds for an altered approach on how to convey, access and share information regarding retail products and online shopping.
There’s a few ways in which Ribbit’s phone integration makes shopping more social. The first and easiest way is through voice comments that Ribbit enables with a call-in feature. Instead of leaving a text review of a Best Buy product, you can use your phone to call a number and leave a voice review for others to hear. Of course, such comments can convey much more emotion and manage to drive the point home, similar to how easily integrated video comments have done the same for blogs and product review sites.
Another way in which Ribbit’s phone integration makes shopping on Best Buy more social is to power friend recommendations via SMS. There’s a great deal of other social media integration, from Twitter to Flickr as well. If you’d like to send a particular product review or item information to a friend or a social network, it’s easy enough to do through this new mashup. The Flickr integration, however, is particularly interesting as it allows you to see the product information for the camera used to take the photo found in a related search via this Consumer Price mashup.
In terms of other phone-related options, Ribbit enables direct calling options from the web or your mobile, along with options to send store or product information to your mobile phone via SMS. Consumers can also set up SMS alerts for target prices or geographic vicinity. Additional features include the ability to check store availability via their mobile phones, or product purchasing capabilities as well.
Ribbit has a great deal of potential given its wide array of options for its platform, which supports a number of interestingly integrated applications. For budget and marketing purposes, the risk is minimal for Best Buy, as the Remix API looks to the developer community to innovate and bring useful applications directly to the consumers. I think the increased level of integration with social media between services like Ribbit and large retailers such as Best Buy display a simplified and multifaceted approach to leveraging consumer sociability as well as cross-device communication, so I’m rather anxious to see other ways in which similar apps can yet improve on this trend.