It has been nearly a whole year since Apple announced the integration of beacon technology with iOS called iBeacons at WWDC. It is important to note that beacons aren’t limited to just iOS technology. The beacons, which are manufactured by a range of different companies including Estimote, can interact with both iOS and Android devices.
Even though initial reactions were ones of privacy concerns for consumers, a recent survey of 1,300 UK smartphone users by eDigitalResearch demonstrated that 45% of consumers would be “willing to receive retailer messages” to their phones from Beacon technology. Consequently, we have seen a range of exciting new ways in which localization marketing can be transformed by using Beacons.
The Swan Centre is the UK’s first shopping centre to embrace iBeacons technology. By integrating iBeacons technology into their existing rewards app, shoppers can now receive localised based content and discounts from retailers, including WHSmiths and Nandos, without the need for opening up the app or browser, or even have access to WIFI or GPS.
Waitrose has begun trialling iBeacons in their new concept store in Swindon. Their app has been integrated with iBeacons to send promotions to shoppers browsing the aisles or food counters. The app also allows shoppers to scan barcodes, read reviews, save items to purchase later and pay for their shopping via a mobile wallet.
Popular fast food chain, McDonalds has equipped 30 of its restaurants in Germany with iBeacons. Diners initially scan a qr code and add the coupon card of their local McDonald’s to Apple’s bonus programme Passbook. Now, each time they visit a McDonalds restaurant they will be welcomed with a new offer.
Virgin Atlantic are currently piloting iBeacons at Heathrow to improve the customer experience by connecting with Upper Class passengers throughout their journey. Initially, the trial has begun by alerting customers to have their electronic boarding pass ready when approaching the private security channel. Virgin are also exploring other ideas from, alerting staff to drops in temperatures so they can promptly provide passengers with blankets to providing content about their inflight entertainment before boarding their flight.
Nivea have integrated iBeacons with the app StickNFind which helps parents keep an eye on their children whilst visiting the beach! This advert is a fantastic demonstration of innovation and really illustrates the dynamic nature of beacon technology, for work or leisure.
If you would like to find out more about iBeacons, including just how the technology works, the infrastructure required to get started and more case uses, then attend our free seminar next month.