Apple is launching iBeacons at its 254 stores in the United States exclusively. Translated to be the first major retail rollout of its micro-proximity based retail assistance.
The technology is new and fresh in the market. For all the customers who download the app from the Apple Store and agree to be tracked every second, will be subjected to location specific offers.
Apple stores in the U.S. are likely to start using the iBeacons, which are reportedly short-ranged and low energy Bluetooth transmitters, designed to detect a device’s location way more accurately than the GPS can.
The iBeacon app is available on iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad which is, currently, operating on iOS7 or later version. Running through Bluetooth, the user must have the app installed in order to receive the in-store notifications.
The Cupertino has reportedly installed 20 of its brand new iBeacon in the Fifth Avenue Apple Store in the New York city. The iBeacon service is optional. It’s only when the users turn on their Location Services is when they can make use of the iBeacon services.
The app is undoubtedly and absolutely brilliant. While, the most people would think that this app is useful only for shoppers, it isn’t entirely true. Of course, a shopaholic with iBeacon would have a better idea about good deals and costs of products in the shops around him or her.
However, given that the customer allows his or her exact location to be known, the app can be put to other uses. For knowing when the next bus is scheduled to arrive while standing at a bus station, or informing a traveler, who is standing at a historical location, as to what events had taken place at that location centuries ago.
Now that the app has made a grand launch, it’s being tested at the Major League Baseball Stadiums in the country for ticket availability, coupons, video snippets, automatic check-ins and other special offers.
With such a tremendous app at fingertips, the marketing strategy of most of the stores is likely to change from yelling out free sales or discount, to actually sliding in quiet texts.
Sure with a change in technology, the world around it is changing. Apple isn’t the first, however, to bring out location-based tech. Shopkick, for instance, sends discount texts when the user is at a store.
However, Apple is known for making things bigger and better. Thus, great expectations from iBeacon is irrefutable. iBeacons are certainly not hyped. The silent revolution has begun.