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According to stats from in Market trials of the
technology, the US has seen app usage increase by
16.5 times for users who receive notifications
triggered by nearby beacons.
For more than a year
now, companies and
have been developing and
hardware that interact
with Apple’s iBeacon
iBeacon is Apple’s name
for a BLE (Bluetooth -
Low Energy) based micro-locations system that works by monitoring signals from
Apple’s iBeacon is only one among the many micro-location systems available
currently. Some of the other notable implementations are - IBM Presence Zones, and
Gimbal (a spin-off from Qualcomm)
Retail stores can now use Micro-location based
geo-fencing to push content that is specific to
the exact location of the customer, be it a specific
aisle, section, the check-out counter, or even outside the store when she is in close
Indoor mapping and
directions can be achieved
by means of iBeacons and
this can be then used to provide turn-by-turn directions to the
customer to help them navigate quickly to the location of the
product of the interest in the retail store.
A micro-location enabled app can also provide additional information on the
product being examined by the customer, such as available variants, alternate
available colors, promotions, etc. The mobile app can also then be used to make up-
One of the disadvantages of using
iBeacon like technologies is that
there is always a risk of overloading the customer with excessive push notifications.
A monthly technology initiative from the Solutions Design Group at Lister Technologies Issue 1 - Jan ’15
Micro-location proximity awareness
can deliver solutions such as
precision indoor navigation, guided
product experiences, real-time
information, and promotions.
The technology leverages advanced
analytics and visualization
capabilities to turn the location
information into actions with clear
With the help of iBeacons, a
smartphone can approximately find
its relative location to an iBeacon in
The customer location information
can then be used to boost in-store
customer service. This could be
customer initiated sales assistance
and help requests, store initiated
sale alerts, promotional messages
based on customer’s prior
interactions on the company’s
Micro-Location and iBeacons are part of two bigger trends -
Contextual Computing and Anticipatory Computing.
In Contextual Computing, the app responds to user requests
based on the context of the request and of the user making the
request. Anticipatory Computing is similar, but the app implicitly
decides on an action without an explicit user request.