Apple's iBeacon technology has made its way to the grocery store, and one company, inMarket, claims the technology will vastly improve the shopping experience for shoppers in Cleveland (Giant Eagle), San Francisco and Seattle (Safeway) where it is initially being launched.
"We are thrilled to be making history by writing the first chapter of micro-location iBeacons helping shoppers' everyday lives. Besides Apple themselves, we are the first to take this groundbreaking technology out of beta tests and into consumers' lives throughout the heartland of the U.S.," said Todd Dipaola, CEO and co-founder of inMarket, in a statement.
In a nutshell, proponents say consumers will benefit from the technology that makes use of low-energy Bluetooth signals to provide shoppers with product information, digital coupons and other incentives based on their precise location. The iBeacon technology is said to be superior to other alternatives when its comes to location accuracy.
The beacons are small round devices said to be slightly larger than a quarter. Signals from the beacons communicate with compatible Apple and Android devices resulting in a wide range of advertising and educational messages being directed to participating shoppers.
"The more data you have about the customer, the more you can upsell them," Hari Gottipati, an independent tech consultant in Phoenix, told Bloomberg Businessweek.
How receptive or reluctant do you expect consumers to be when it comes to receiving location-based messages on their smartphones via iBeacon technology?