Tate Goes Hi-Tech with iPhone Tours


The Tate is looking to stay on top of things it looks like, as they’ve just released the first of what’s sure to be a whole slew of museum/exhibit tours intended to be viewed on an iPhone or iPod Touch. Instead of going the standard route of renting out small audio players for visitors to rent, the Tate has designed a whole, snazzy interactive tour, downloadable via the free wi-fi in the museum, providing audio and clickable extras as people wander around and take it all in. Right now the Tate only has this available for their soon-to-end Gustav Klimt exhibit, but like we said, we can almost guarantee that they have plenty more in the pipeline, as does every other museum on the planet, we’d guess. Here’s a bit:

…the podcast itself has been done very well. It begins with a short introduction, showing a user how to use the device. For each item, a brief image appears and then the screen goes blank while the narration occurs to allow the visitor to focus on the actual work of art, rather than the video screen. Towards the end of each items file, videos, stills or interviews are presented as secondary content to enhance what the user has already learned.

The tour appears to be working for the gallery. Will Gompertz, director of Tate Media, stated that the average visit time increased from 45 minutes to 3 hours since the tour was introduced.