“Apple has embarked on an ambitious program to use the sensors in its iPhones to map the large indoor areas of stores, offices, event spaces and commercial buildings, according to Onyx Beacon CEO Roman Foeckl, who attended Apple’s WWDC conference for developers. (Onyx both markets beacons and provides management software for beacon owners),” Jim Edwards reports for Business Insider. “The effort isn’t a secret — Apple has been seeding commercial spaces with its iBeacon technology for months. But most people don’t know that iBeacon exists, or what it is for. And Apple is using a range of technologies in addition to iBeacon to create its indoor maps. Business Insider asked Apple for comment but we didn’t hear back.”

“Foeckl says Apple is likely now ahead of Google when it comes to indoor mapping. That is significant because indoor maps will generate revenue in the future for stores and shops in malls and arenas. It could also generate revenue for Apple,” Edwards reports. “iBeacons are small devices that detect the Bluetooth signal coming from iPhones. They can be used to ping the iPhones of people walking by with offers or useful messages, such as ‘hey, you’re walking by a Starbucks.’”

“The indoor map strategy is also interesting because Apple’s last major mapping launch, the Apple Maps app, was a disaster,” Edwards reports. “Apple has since fixed Apple Maps, and now it may have a jump on Google in the indoor sector. ‘Apple has learned from its mistakes from the initial launch of map services and won’t repeat with launch of indoor mapping,’ Foeckl says. “iBeacon and Bluetooth are opt-in technologies. You have to choose to switch them on, and you can turn them off anytime. Apple’s updated iOS 8 mobile operating system will also come with much more detailed privacy controls, in part for this reason. If Apple wins its indoor maps race, it could gain a fortune… Indoor maps could be even more lucrative, because users are just a few inches from the products being sold and the checkout where they pay for them. iBeacons will let marketers know that a shopper is in the candy aisle, looking not just at the chocolate display, but at the milk-chocolate-macadamia-nut section. It’s that precise.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple’s public silence over iBeacon is deafening.

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