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X-ray Arms. Interactive experience for Ulysse Nardin

x ray arms ulysse nardin bw
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On the occasion of SIHH 2019 (Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie), Ulysse Nardin approached Tapptic to design an interactive digital experience to be showcased in the brand new innovation LAB section.

Tapptic organized an ideation workshop to explore a series of opportunities aligned with Ulysse Nardin’s core values and business objectives. 

The purpose of the operation was crystal clear for Ulysse Nardin’s management: they wanted to offer an exciting experience around their X range, worth remembering, which could earn them features in leading business publications. The concept had to be re-usable for other events and in the retail network after SIHH 2019. 

Planned activities at SIHH 2019

Ulysse Nardin had already confirmed the following activities. 

collaboration with Shok1, a street artist specialized in aerosol X-ray art, who would create a X-ray shark (celebrating Ulysse Nardin’s maritime heritage).  

Shok1 aerosol X-ray art

A second booth (the Boudoir) showcasing 10 limited editions of 10 watches developed in partnership with Milo Manara, an Italian comic book writer and artist, famous for his erotic illustrations. 

Ulysse Nardin Manara watches - SIHH 2019

A presentation of the Freak X and Skeleton X ranges. 

Ulysse Nardin Skeleton X watches


At first we had 3 potential angles:


A concept around the revealing potential of X rays, elaborating on Shok1’s presence at SIHH 2019 for UN. 


A concept which would explore the erotic background of the brand, prolonging the pleasure of Manara’s contribution. 

a broader approach

which would develop the brand values & DNA (maritime, authentic, on the edge) while not being directly inspired by the activities planned at SIHH 2019.

Technical showcase

Tapptic’s team demoed a vast array of technological innovations to Ulysse Nardin’s management, to show them what could be leveraged at SIHH innovation LAB.

Leap Motion Demo
Leap Motion Demo

We usually do this in the early ideation workshops to spark fresh ideas among participants. We also bring a huge stock of post-it notes.

We introduced the latest innovations in 4 sub-workshops:


  • interaction between the physical & digital dimensions
  • computer vision & sensors
  • interactive tables
  • augmented reality


Angles 1 and 2 (Shok1 and Manara) were by essence very visual, which was confirmed by the suggestions from the brainstorming sessions in our 4 sub-workshops.

There were a lot of them, as you can see from the photo of our wall of post-it notes.

Ideation workshop for Ulysse Nardin, early ideas.

To name just a few:

Around SKOK1

  • Timelapse of the artist at work
  • A shark, from X-ray to Flesh
  • X-shaped QR codes to trigger the activity
  • Shoot a photo of a watch and see it in X-ray
  • X-puzzle
  • Draw your own aerosol X-ray art piece on your phone
  • Trigger a X-ray video of a UN watch via NFC (on an interactive table)
  • X-ray photo booth
  • Arm X-ray radiography feat. the watch on the wrist
  • X-ray face lenses (Snapchat-type)
  • X-ray face displayed on watch
  • Shark face AR filters 
  • X-ray shark in 3D in the booth
  • Shark Hunt in the alleys of SIHH 2019 (Pokemon Go)

Around Manara

  • Create your own dialogues for a story
  • Scan & animate illustrations (e.g. naked girl in motion), QR or marker / AR
  • NFC tag triggering access to special content in the LAB
  • Hidden animations (QR codes under illustrations)
  • Scan an illustration in the LAB to trigger GPS guidance to Manara’s Boudoir
  • Beacons triggering exciting experiences in the Boudoir
  • Erotic chatbot
  • Create your own Manara-styled avatar (on a watch)
  • Jump into a Manara’s comic book 
  • Thanks to AI, find your lookalike in Manaras’s comic books
  • Thermal imaging camera broadcasting a live stream from the Boudoir in the LAB
  • Measure body signals in the Boudoir to reveal your rising excitement 
  • Solve a Manara puzzle on an interactive table (+ other simple games)
  • Add erotic characters to the Boudoir in AR

Around Ulysse Nardin

  • UN explorers: NFC tags triggering interviews of UN customers
  • Signup & blind lunch suggestion
  • Watch puzzle
  • NFC domotic, enabling visitors to control lighting in the booth
  • In-depth watch info triggered via NFC
  • Trigger a digital version of the watch via a NFC tag under the box of each watch
  • Watch Tinder (matching you with a model)
  • Shark NFC keyring (3 of them to light the art piece)
  • AI-based watch fitting
  • Watch authenticity checking device
  • Facial recognition to enhance customer service in the booth
  • Recreate a watchmaker’s workshop in AR
  • See huge AR 3D models of the watches in the booth
  • Display UN watches on your wrist, in AR

Voting time

After each sub-workshop, participants voted for the best ideas per technology. 

Then we discussed which ideas from the selected ones would be rejected or kept in a short list.

The Ulysse Nardin global AI sounded promising (find your perfect watch) but too complex to implement. 

There were six ideas on the shortlist:

  • A connected X device
  • Be part of Manara’s story
  • Shark hunt
  • X-ray arms (static & in motion)
  • Inside a watch
  • Connected boudoir


Tapptic also suggested to consider the Manara Lookalike and Erotic chatbot ideas.

All these ideas were then screened through 6 filters: 

  • Technical complexity
  • Cost
  • Time to execute
  • Originality / out of the box
  • Re-usability 
  • Link with the experiences planned for SIHH 2019 (Shok-1 / Manara) 


Ulysse Nardin decided to go for the dynamic version of the X-ray arms idea. It was executed by Tapptic leveraging the capabilies of the Leap Motion sensor.

This interactive experience was premiered at SIHH 2019 and has since been replicated in other locations, in multiple stores and in an exclusive pop up in Soho, NYC. 

ulysse nardin nyc tapptic
X-ray arms concept in Soho, NYC.
ullysse nardin leap motion instore tapptic
X-ray arms. In-store experience (image source: Watchonista).

Book a FREE 2-hour workshop to discover the latest tech with a Tapptic Expert

We’ll come to your office or we’ll organize a conference call to introduce you to the latest tech innovations in AR/VR, chatbots, voice assistants, AI, blockchain & much more !