Best of Beacons this Week: Physical Web Support comes to Chrome 49 Beta for Android and more
February 19, 2016
We are back with another issue of ‘Best of Beacons this Week’. This week we’ve got a great lineup of beacon articles in store, right from Google’s announcement of Eddystone support for Chrome Android browser to how NFL’s Super Bowl leveraged beacons to engage fans outside the stadium as well. So sit back, sip a cup of coffee and check out the stories we have lined up for you.
After lagging behind the Chrome for iOS for several months, Google recently announced Physical Web support for the Android Chrome app. Starting with version 49, currently in beta, Chrome for Android will be able to read and interact with the Eddystone-URL scheme that Google is supporting along with Eddystone Bluetooth low-energy beacons. The first time a user comes into contact with a beacon they will get a notification asking if they want to enable what Google calls the Physical Web. If turned on, users will get a passive notification that lists what nearby beacons are available. Thus, by building the identification feature within Chrome, developers will now have a larger user base of devices that they can communicate with via beacons. Check out this article to learn how this announcement aligns with Google’s IoT plan.
With a couple of brands having already undertaken large scale beacon deployments, year 2015 saw close to about 4 million beacons deployed globally. And Unacast’s latest Q4 Proxbook report confirms that these beacon deployments are well on track and the numbers align with ABI Research’s forecast of 400 million beacons to be deployed by 2020. This comes as no surprise, given that 2016 began with Rite Aid’s announcement of initiating the largest beacon-deployment in a retail setting till date. Check out this article to learn about some of the top 25 retailers, right from Waitrose and GasBuddy to Woolworths and Target, that are making a mark with their proximity marketing campaigns via beacons.
New York is digitizing its newly reopened flagship store in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood by rolling out a full beacon network, introducing “connected” sales associates, and enabling same-day delivery. This digital facelift is primarily aimed at helping Barneys bridge the digital and physical worlds for consumers whose purchase journeys are now spread across mobile, desktop, and in-store action. In their efforts towards this front, the brand plans to use beacons to send targeted notifications to customers in-store based on what’s in stock and also on the customer’s digital shopping bags or wish lists. Check out this article to learn how Barneys plans to provide their shoppers with the personalized experience that they expect in today’s on-demand world.
In addition to the 1000 beacons that were installed at Levi’s Stadium back in Nov. 2014, this year we saw NFL install beacons in areas surrounding the stadium, in their efforts to connect with as many Super Bowl fans as possible. These beacons were used to notify football fans of events, location-alerts and other points of interests via its ‘Road to 50’ mobile app. Thus, by tapping into the concentration of Super Bowl celebrants, NFL was able to demonstrate that it’s not necessary to be at the epicenter of a major event to provide what is even greater engagement. Check out this article to learn how beacons helped engage Super Bowl fans in an enhanced manner.
5. Displaydata’s New Beacon-enabled Electronic Shelf Label Interacts With Shoppers
Displaydata, a U.K.-based company that calls itself the largest supplier of fully graphic electronic shelf labels (ESLs), recently released Aura 29 BLE, a new ESL that employs Bluetooth beacon technology. The company said that this new ESL will not only allow retailers to manage shelf pricing remotely, but also help them to deliver discount coupons and other promotional offers to shoppers based on their location. Adding on to this, the retail stores could also use this along with their app to track store traffic as well as ascertain how long customers have remained at a particular location. Check out this article to learn how Displaydata plans to use its new ESL to allow retailers to interact with their shoppers.