What if you could earn achievements, compete on global leaderboards, and keep track of your lifetime stats when playing pinball? That’s the idea behind Insider Connected, a free service from Stern that promises to make pinball more engaging at your local pizza joint and at home.
Insider Connected launched in September of 2021 and is pre-installed on all new Stern Pinball machines, which start around $6,000. Those who use the service can “log in” to any compatible machine by scanning a QR code on their phone—you don’t need to own one of Stern’s Elvira or Jurassic Park machines to keep track of your stats and earn achievements.
Here are some of Insider Connected’s best features:
- Stats: See your player score, the number of pinball games you’ve played, recent locations you’ve played, and more.
- Achievements: Complete challenges to earn achievements, which you can feature on your Insider Connected profile.
- High Scores: Never lose track of your high scores again!
- Leaderboards: Get the best high score to compete with friends or global leaderboards.
- Forums: Join a community of pinball fans and get into heated, dorky arguments.
- Prizes: Stern will offer real-world and virtual prizes when users complete promotional challenges.
Stern expects that these features will help local businesses engage their community. Though as Stern explained to us, many of its customers buy pinball machines for at-home use. It makes a lot of sense; there aren’t many companies building new Led Zepplin, Elvira, Beatles, Guardians of the Galaxy, Jurassic Park, or Star Wars machines.
Again, all new Stern Pinball machines ship with Insider Connected. If you’d like to add Insider Connected to an older Stern Pinball machine, you can pay around $200 for a retrofit job. Stern’s pinball machines are available through select retailers, including The Pinball Company. You can also find a Stern Pinball machine near you with the company’s Pinball Locator.