Keep an Eye on Apple’s iBeacon

Keep an Eye on Apple’s iBeacon

After its quiet announcement of a new feature called iBeacon back in June, Apple hasn’t revealed a whole lot about its potential and intended purposes. That hasn’t kept us from being very interested. What iBeacon does is it allows a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) enabled device to turn into a beacon that has the ability to transmit data to iOS7 devices once they’re in range (within 160 feet). They’re extremely significant because they have location accuracy higher even than GPS. Recently, the interest of retailers (like Macy’s) has been piqued because these iBeacons can be used to geofence areas like indoor spaces. They do this using signal emitters or other iOS devices that are low-cost.

Retailers have jumped on and begun rolling out this technology for an entirely unique shopping experience. iBeacon’s potential isn’t limited to the retail sector, but we’re seeing some big moves made in that department with the help of this technology. The company Shopkick deployed the first iBeacon presence signal at any major retailer on November 20th, 2013 –it’s called ShopBeacon. Macy’s became the first retailer to adopt this technology. As soon as a customer, who has previously opted in, walks into a store their shopping experience is completely altered.

According to Shopkick’s website:

“ShopBeacon is currently live in a closed beta trial at Macy’s Herald Square, New York and Union Square, SanFrancisco. ShopBeacon can welcome a shopper when she enters a store and show her location-specific deals, discounts, recommendations, and rewards, without her having to remember to open the app. It can also tie at-homebrowsing to in-store benefit—if she “likes” a specific product in the app, shopBeacon can remind her when she enters the store that sells it. It can also deliver department-specific offers throughout the store—so the boots she liked show up at the most useful time—in the Shoe department. ShopBeacon requires minimal investment, can be installed by sticking the device on a wall or other flat surface, and has a battery life of five years. Now available for purchasenationwide, it works with the shopkick app with its 6 million+ shoppers, as well as with retailers’ own apps.”

ShopBeacon is just the start of this revolutionary technology. The retail experience will never be the same. iBeacon has provided a completely unique way for consumers to engage in their shopping experiences. Beyond the retail realm, iBeacon presents a revolutionary opportunity for app developers who are interested in indoor mapping, mobile payments and targeted advertising. It’s already been mention that Major League Baseball said it has plans to use iBeacon technology at some stadiums and Apple is expected to roll it out in its retail stores.   

We’ll continue to keep an eye on iBeacon and see where it reaches next. I for one think that this is definitely the next huge thing; this is going to change the face of advertising, marketing, and apps. Stay tuned.

See my sources for the article in the more links section below.


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  • 4 December 2013
  • Author: James Nagy
  • Number of views: 3850
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James Nagy

James NagyJames Nagy

Need a consultant today? How can I help? As Co-Founder and Managing Partner of J&S Tech Designs I have nearly three decades of experience and expertise to share with you to help your business, product, or idea thrive. If you like this article, please sign up in the “stay informed” section!

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Full biography

Full biography

James Nagy is managing partner and co-founder of J&S Tech Designs - a business consulting organization that specializes in providing software and website design, development, and management expertise to organizations. He is also Managing Director and one of four co-founders of Sprocket Websites, Inc. and Chief Executive Office and one of four co-founding members of Clinical Collaboration Software, LLC.

James has over twenty-five years of experience in the information technology field, spending twenty years in software development, sixteen years in executive management and the last six years as a serial entrepreneur launching and running several successful technology organizations.

Throughout his career he has led companies, divisions, departments and teams to successful outcomes. He has executed process reengineering within organizations that were struggling to produce. He has provided strategic vision and organization planning in situations that needed direction. He has built complex systems in several unique marketplaces that required thorough knowledge and expertise to be successful. It is his passion for excellence and desire for success that has enabled him to meet the challenges presented and continue to exceed expectations.

James’ passion for delivering innovative solutions and creative strategies enabled him to develop strong business foundations for long-term success. He is an active member of the Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, the North of the River Chamber of Commerce and the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce where he served on several teams, advisory committees, and legislative groups. He is a founding member of the Chicago Area DotNetNuke Users Group that has held several large, successful Website design and development events. James has donated time, money and expertise to many volunteer, fundraising and charitable organizations like KidsMatter of Naperville, The Naperville Film Festival, Summer Place Theatre, TEDxNaperville, Neuqua Valley High School Senior Spectacular and many others.

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