Vend Live
Infrastructure // Embedded Software // Telemetry // Web

Overview

Vend Live is a platform designed to manage intelligent vending machines, and telemetry enabled devices. It's a simplistic, minimalist application that provides end-users with the necessary business intelligence to achieve unprecedented cost savings, and streamline their logistics.

The technology stack spans numerous different components that come together to deliver an intuitive, straightforward user experience. Using a mixture of database replication, messaging and a scalable server infrastructure, clients have instant reports and key data at their fingertips.

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Brief

The Vend Live brief was simple - create a platform that was sufficiently adaptable to accomodate a wide range of telemetry enabled devices, aggregate information, and provide Vend Live's clients with the necessary information to run their business. The key objectives included:

  • Minimal data transfer between machines and each server
  • Flexibility to support different types of devices in the future
  • Deliver instant reports, when required
User Experience

The Vend Live user experience is simple - it was originally created as a 'Minimum Viable Product' to prove a concept, which it achieved flawlessly. It's a project that is continuing to grow, and incremental development is ongoing. The user experience is centred on a high-level overview of the machine estate, with a focus to minimise downtime and optimise revenue generation.

Interactive

Interactive elements retain the user on the current page. Editing information for instance creates an inline edit form, which retains the original position of inputs and elements, ensuring a greater familiarity for the client, and thereby simplifying adoption for their users.

  • Headline statistics for a high-level overview of a location
  • Inline edit to increase familiarity
Mobile Responsive

Aeguana is entirely committed to building a more responsive web. As such, all our projects are responsive by default, and we take care in carrying over the key elements of the user experience across the different devices that the user may select to use.

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Web Application

The web application provides two-way communication with any machine, whilst constantly minimising data transfer. As a result, it's possible to do things such as remotely update prices (and define pricing criteria), remotely dipense products, and reset stock levels.

Media Encoding & Distribution

Vend Live provides the ability to upload media to a designated machine, or group of machines, and have it distributed instantly. As it's not a bundled service offered by our client, they also have a management dashboard to accurately predict data transfer costs, and pass these back to their client.

Media files are uploaded by the user, encoded using Amazon Web Services Transcoding, and distributed to each machine. If the vending machines support it, the user can even go as far as controlling the volume remotely, or muting the machine altogether.

Real-time Data

The Vend Live interactive dashboard highlights key information that needs addressing. Depending on client KPI's and contractual SLA's, this may highlight different items that need to be actioned urgently.

At a glance, it provides fault indicators (dozens of different fault types), low stock levels and any suspected vandalism cases where there is an imminent financial and health and safety risk.

Performing an action through Vend Live provides instant feedback to the user, and usually takes less than a couple of seconds to receive acknowledgement. Every action is carefully logged, to ensure accurate audit data, and prevent fraud.