Beyond retail: What’s next for indoor location tracking with Apple’s iBeacon

“When Apple announced indoor location tracking technology for iOS 7, it was a retailer’s dream come true,” Nicholas Clark reports for VentureBeat.

“With the precise, low-cost indoor tracking technology of iBeacon and Bluetooth LE (low energy) devices, stores can now target appropriate shoppers by both interest and location, turning window-shopping into actual sales,” Clark reports. “Big brands are clamoring to take advantage of Apple’s functionality, but a host of different kinds of organizations can make use of the data to engage visitors in new ways and learn from their movement patterns.”

“Now that Apple can track your location more granularly than a blue dot on a street map, the broader potential of indoor location tracking falls into two categories — creating engagement channels that did not exist before, and replacing tasks or functions that previously had to be performed manually,” Clark reports. “Museums, expo halls, and educational institutions can radically improve their service by incorporating iBeacon for indoor location tracking.”

Read more in the full article here.


    1. People keep talking abut retailers being able to advertise to you, but think differently. What about being in a big warehouse style store or home improvement center. They could have an app that you put in your project or what item you are looking for and it guides you to where to find the item(s) related to where you are in the store. Or when you found the display but can’t find the bin location where the box is stored because they put it on the next isle. Scan the bar code, get a map to the shelf.

      1. So instead of asking assistance from the college kids in corporate aprons, the biggest advantage of iBeacons will be to avoid store staff so you can treat your local big box store like a vending machine?

        Count me as unimpressed. I already know how to read the aisle signs, thank you very much.

        iBeacon is very definitely aimed to be a retailer tracking/advertising tool, as an increasing amount of mobile apps are. Chalk it up as one more evidence that Apple is turning against the individual user and instead attempting to coddle up to the advertising and retail industries.

        Ironic, given the 1984 Mac ad.

  1. Has anyone seen that movie Time Machine where the main character travels into the future and everywhere he goes there is some virtual guy (hologram) hawking him to buy products?

  2. MI-5 chief: Some day, Mr. Fiennes, you will have the entire population under permanent 24 hour surveillance. Will you be happy then?

    Fiennes (his assistant): Happy? Satisfied.

    from the TV drama “A Very British Coup” (best thing I ever saw on television, aired on “Masterpiece Theater”)

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