2015 has seen a big rise in the number of iBeacon apps. Gone are the days when beacons were underleveraged and used only for loyalty programs and couponing, predominantly in the retail sector. Today, beacons are helping deliver enhanced experiences to customers and businesses alike, across diverse industries and verticals. The sheer versatility of the technology allows beacons to be used across sectors from restaurants, events to museums.
Following is our round up on the latest iBeacon apps that are driving innovation in various verticals from high-fashion to safety. We had talked about 5 Best iBeacon apps in an earlier post, here are another 5 apps that stand out for their novelty and innovative use cases.
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Knomi is a beacon enabled app that helps high-end fashion boutiques drive store footfalls. Maintaining a premium brand persona is critical to every high-end fashion brand. This requires such boutiques to undertake niche and personalised marketing initiatives as opposed to initiatives that are mass market oriented.
Currently, customer acquisition (by means of fancy events and dinners) can prove to be quite expensive for high-end fashion brands. Knomi, a Finland and London based fashion discovery startup is all set to change this status-quo. It offers an iOS app that helps boutiques find new buyers without denuding the carefully curated brand value upon which they depend.
Knomi currently has signed up more than 70 high-end fashion retailers in London including Far Fetch, Net-a-porter, Mr Porter and MatchesFashion, to supply inventory to its app.
Fashion boutiques have to install a BLE beacon and when the users of the app are in the vicinity they would receive a push notification suggesting that they go check out a certain item. These notifications are highly personalised to the user and sent in the context of the specific items that the user has collected — as seen in the app beforehand and liked enough to save to their collection — or which the fashionistas’ they are following in the app have curated or liked. Hence this is a social fashion discovery tool.
Knomi users also have the convenience of making purchases on the app itself. But driving physical store footfalls is still the most important proposition to fashion brands as well as the app.
2. Safe Site
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Safe Site is one of the many powerful new apps collaboratively built by Apple and IBM. This is an efficient enterprise app that is suited for use across multiple industries, through which professionals can input data and access information and analytics from multiple devices.
The app, designed for forepersons, is enabled with a built in camera and microphone to assess and record on-site risks. The app leverages beacons to allow site managers to respond promptly to avoid danger, report incidents, and share alerts with nearby employees. The app also alerts users when they are near hazardous areas.
The Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room in Seattle, recently launched a beacon enabled feature on their app, that allows visitors to follow the story of the coffee bean’s journey from harvesting to roasting and tasting, via their phone as they move around the coffee shop.
The move further advances Starbucks’ mobile strategy, in which it has seen significant success with mobile payments.
Watch the video below to discover how Starbucks truly delights its customers by weaving a strong narrative powered by beacons.
Starbucks plans to expand its Reserve coffee line to 1,500 locations globally, as well as open at least 100 stores designed to highlight rare coffees, starting with Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. They even have plans for an additional Roastery in Asia in 2016.
4. SITA OnAir
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In their efforts to boost in-flight usage of Wi-Fi, SITA OnAir recently launched a new app that allows passengers to stay connected while travelling. The platform uses beacons, both at the airport and in-flight to send notifications to passengers about the available Wi-Fi services. Beacons at the gate and in-flight can be used to push messages via the airline’s app to encourage passengers’ to try the available Wi-Fi services. Adding on to that, beacons in the aircraft can also be used to remind passengers when Wi-Fi services are available for use onboard.
The app can be fully customized to fit the airline’s brand and Wi-Fi service offerings. It can even be directly integrated into the airline’s existing app as a menu option.
Wisely is an app that helps link a restaurant’s staff to its guests through iBeacon technology.
The app is invaluable when it comes to delivering a superior customer experience and building relationships with customers. The app works in a two fold manner. From the restaurant’s perspective, a push notification alerts the restaurant staff when a signed-up guest (to the app) arrives. Important information, from guest preferences and feedback to the number of times the guest has dined at the restaurant is sent to the manager. This allows the restaurant to serve the guest with a more personal touch.
Wisely also has a loyalty program called the “Preferred Guest Program “ which is much different from usual programs that use monetary discounts to drive loyalty. The Wisely program allows restaurants to provide tailored programs (e.g. 1 on 1 tasting sessions) to strengthen the restaurant experience.
The app is currently live in around 75 Michigan restaurants, and starting to pop up in Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, and Orlando.
Thus, beacons today engender enhanced user experience in the most seamless manner across multiple industries. The featured iBeacon apps are among the latest and most innovative apps to hit the market today. The launch of such apps is testimony that the coming years will observe huge leaps in the adoption of iBeacon technology.
If you are planning a beacon pilot, take a look at Beaconstac, that includes everything you need to get started. Using Beaconstac you can set up your own campaign, without a developer’s help!