The Transform Technology Summits start October 13th with Low-Code/No Code: Enabling Enterprise Agility. Register now!


airport scanner

Pocket Gems is bringing The Kedlin Company’s surprise hit, Airport Scanner, to the Android market in June.

Airport Scanner is one of those weird games that you’d never have thought to become so popular. But the title reached No. 1 in Apple’s App Store in 2012 and has been downloaded more than 7 million times. Besides being oddly fun, Airport Scanner’s usage data is helping the Transportation Security Administration figure out why some security officers are better at X-raying baggage than others.

Airport Scanner is the third game that San Francisco-based Pocket Gems is releasing under its new third-party publishing program. The Kedlin Company created the game in Bellevue, Wash.

Webinar

Three top investment pros open up about what it takes to get your video game funded.

Watch On Demand

Cast as a TSA baggage screener, you’ll have to identify weapons and other illegal items (like liquid containers that are over 3.4 ounces) in passengers’ luggage. One of my kids is addicted to this game, which involves looking at X-ray images and spotting the contraband. Looking over my kid’s shoulder, I have wondered what could possibly be fun about Airport Scanner.

Researchers are using the game to power a Duke University study aimed at improving real-world luggage screening.

“Airport Scanner has been wildly popular on iOS devices, and we’re delighted to bring the game to Android users worldwide,” said Jameel Khalfan, who oversees publishing at Pocket Gems.

“It’s such a great game that we simply couldn’t let just iOS users have all of the fun,” said Ben Sharpe, the chief executive of The Kedlin Company. “Pocket Gems has a successful track record of creating games that people love, and we value their expertise and appreciate their unique approach to publishing. They made it possible for us to bring Airport Scanner to the Android platform; without them, we’re not sure it would’ve happened.”

Kedlin, which was founded in 2008, is working with professor Stephen Mitroff of Duke University’s Visual Cognition Laboratory to give anonymous gameplay data that will answer questions about real-world baggage screening that can’t be easily tested in the lab. With TSA funding, Mitroff is trying to figure out why one person is better at visual searching than someone else. The goal is to improve airport security.

“High accuracy during visual searches is critical for professionals like TSA officers and radiologists, as any missed target can have life-or-death consequences,” said Mitroff. “It’s vital to understand how people learn these skills best and what factors lead to accurate performance, and the data collected from Airport Scanner enable my team to assess and learn from hundreds of thousands of individuals on accuracy, response time, false alarms, the ability to avoid distraction, the ability to multitask, and more.”

Pocket Gems was founded in 2009 and has launched 25 games that have been downloaded more than 100 million times.

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/40987476]

GamesBeat

GamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. How will you do that? Membership includes access to:
  • Newsletters, such as DeanBeat
  • The wonderful, educational, and fun speakers at our events
  • Networking opportunities
  • Special members-only interviews, chats, and "open office" events with GamesBeat staff
  • Chatting with community members, GamesBeat staff, and other guests in our Discord
  • And maybe even a fun prize or two
  • Introductions to like-minded parties
Become a member