Microsoft plays with live-surveys in new Windows Phone app BrushFire


Microsoft's live-survey app code named 'BrushFire' is in early alpha stages of development

The notion of using live feedback and crowdsourcing during events isn't new--heck your teachers probably did when they asked you to "raise your hands" when voting on something as a kid. But this is 2012 and we need something with a little more bite to it. BrushFire is such an attempt.

Made by Microsoft (and technically for internal use only at the moment) the app is is still in the "alpha" stage meaning don't expect it to actually work. But the concept here is what's neat. From the app description:

"This is for internal MSIT use only. The application allows users to complete surveys by supplying a provided code. The application is alpha and only demonstrates the first activity type of survey. Future versions will include other types of activities. You can use the code MSIT to sample the application. "

How BrushFire works, in theory, is when a presenter at a conference wants to get feedback or interact with the audience in some e.g. a survey, they can fire one up and have it broadcast through this app to the audience. The audience can then take the survey on their phones and the info is calculated in real time. This type of feedback is often done with product testing and audience screenings of movies but now the technology can go anywhere and be configured nearly on the fly.


There's no word if the app and service will go forward, be cross-platform etc (though it'd make sense to be on iOS and Android if maximum audience participation is wanted) but the idea behind it seems extremely useful. It's always nice to take a peek behind Microsoft's curtain a bit.

Thanks, anon, for the info



There are 9 comments. Sign in to comment

kenzibit says:

I don't understand anything

awesumjon says:

Think "ask the audience" in who wants to be a millionaire. That's pretty much it.

Safeabz says:

Cool its different

ZX9 says:

This makes me think of the Moses and the burning bush...

pkacd1981 says:

There should be a cross-platform survey app that friends can use for fun. Surprised I don't know of an app like. Something that allows the user to make up their own and just send it along to groups of friends. Like they do on Facebook but just through mobiles. Maybe there is one already?

cam45fblax says:

Really awesome concept, could be a huge helps in lots of scenarios. But sadly for it to be truly effective this gem will have to be cross-platform

Duffau says:

If done right, this could be great. Bring it to schools too, its better than buying those $20 remotes for certain classes that you have an impossible time selling and can't use it for another class because they use a different model.

xmarklive says:

How about polling the whole world on specific days

ChrisK91 says:

How about using this feature realtime during TV quiz shows?