Phillips Intelligent Lighting System to outperform iBeacons?

Eindhoven, the Netherlands: Whenever a new technology is born, competitors appear right away. At least this is the case with iBeacon and the ‘nearable’ devices already stemmed from the opportunities offered. The first competitor to iBeacon seems to be Philips, the company recently presenting an intelligent lighting system at an innovation showcase held in Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

How does Philips want to compete with iBeacon? The lighting system is created in such a manner that it can transmit information on people’s smartphones, as they walk around shops, museums, or office buildings. The purpose of the new technology is to enhance customers’ shopping experience, by showing exactly where certain areas of interest are, or providing them with the latest offers.

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This week (short) Pin Drop and Klarna to US, Beacon news from Ifinity (Airbeacon), Sevenval and Sensorberg, the Spanish Shazam,

  • Social locations app ‘Pin Drop’ launches in US with new features
  • Ifinity introduces AirBeacon – battery-less ibeacon extracting power from ambient electromagnetic waves
  • Sevenval and Sensorberg use Beacons for Indoor-Navigation
  • Klarna to offer its services in US
  • Meet Movielang: the Spanish Shazam
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Carrefour launches mobile app to guide you to your shopping list, literally!

Paris: French retail giant Carrefour has launched two new services that are trending and are designed to make the shopping experience at the hypermarkets more than just shopping.

The first one is the revolutionary C-ou mobile app which offers in-house geo location services with the help of low energy beacons of Bluetooth signals. Currently this new piece of technology is being tested at its flagship store Villeneuve La Garenne, northwest of Paris.

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Exklusiv München Helps Smartphone Users Gain Information and Instant Access to Hip Locations via Beacon Technology

Munich, Germany: Exclusiv München has just taken technology coverage in Munich a bit further, combining the information that is usually provided through their lifestyle magazine with beacon technology. Their app allows users to receive information on shops, restaurants, galleries and museums as they walk around the city, in search of something interesting to do or see. What Exklusiv München aims for is better coverage for their app and the technology involved, and their efforts are targeted on getting more local businesses to join the system.

According to the magazine’s representatives, the app has already been downloaded over 10,000 times and expansion is underway. Any local business can rent a beacon transmitter for 75 Euros monthly, and, in exchange, users of the app can be attracted to the stores and shops with special offers.

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iBeacons for Directories: German Yellow Pages' App Update

Frankfurt, Germany: Beacon technology seems to be here to stay, as more and more businesses are running tests to experiment with the new way of attracting customers living in a digital era to brick and mortar venues in the real world. The last to jump the band wagon seems to be the German Yellow Pages that has recently updated the directory’s apps for all devices, to prepare the upcoming implementation of ibeacon.

The last previous major update for the German Yellow Pages apps was operated in February 2014. In their quest of offering a solid experience to end users, the directory is trying to make more up to date information available, so that users are not mislead in regards to where certain businesses or venues are located and what they offer.

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Barclays is testing iBeacon tech to improve in-branch accessibility

Compared to other banks, Barclays is often way out ahead when it comes to embracing new technology. After becoming the first financial institution to let customers transfer money using only their mobile number, the company also let some business users swap PINs, passwords and authentication codes for fingerprint scanners. For its latest tech trial, Barclays wants to make things easier for customers coming into its branches, so it today announced that it's become the latest UK company to trial Beacon technology.

Read the original article on Engadget

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Paying with ibeacons in Turkish restaurants

Istanbul, Turkey: Diners at Turkish restaurant Olivia’s Pizzeria have become the first in the country to be able to use their BKM Express digital wallet to pay for their meals with their mobile phone.

BKM has partnered with venue discovery platform Mekanist for the service and the partners now plan to expand the service to restaurants across Turkey.

“The payment can be made in two different methods thanks to the merchant application, developed for Olivia’s Pizzeria,” BKM explains.

Read the original article on NFC World

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iBeacon Case: Beacons in Norwich Buses provide Offers to passengers

Norwich, UK: Beacon technology is thought to be merely in an experimentation stage, which is why many companies are still trying to find its best uses, whether this means pure marketing or direct monetization. The direction chosen by FirstGroup, a transportation company in the UK, is to make people take the bus more often. What’s the catch?

With the help of Bluetooth Low Energy transmitters installed on the buses crossing Norwich up and down, left and right, the company hopes to determine people armed with smartphones to choose this type of public transportation over others. While they travel like this, these passengers will be able to receive special deals, coupons, discounts, and other types of loyalty rewards from various local brands.

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Beacon Case: treasure hunting in the city of Amsterdam

Beacon Case: treasure hunting in the city of Amsterdam

Social gifting app Treatz used the popular Sinterklaas event in Amsterdamto promote the use of their app: during the Saint Nicholas ‘intocht’, Treatz app users were able to take part in a treasure hunt. They received clues (ibeacon triggered push messages) on their Iphone that led them to places where presents were handed out. 

For Treatz it was the second time to employ beacons to promte their app . Earlier this year they took part in the Amsterdam shop route providing free beacons to participating shops. 

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Flora Holland Trade Fair Experiments with iBeacon – Offline Retails Businesses Made Personal Once More

The offline retail business is in suffering; with so much online shopping going on, it is clear that brick and mortar stores have taken a big hit. However, the situation is about to change, as the implementation of iBeacon technology in such real life stores can draw more visitors and link their online experience, ever present on their smartphones, with what is happening before their very eyes.

At least, this is what the most recent iBeacon experiment related to offline retail is trying to state. FloraHolland Trade Fair, held at the beginning of November in Aalsmeer, proved to be quite a surprising experience to visitors through the implementation of iBeacon technology.


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French Mobile Couponing app Plyce raises €1.5 Million

Paris: Geo-localized mobile shopping networking Plyce announced to have raised €1.5 Million from Caloga & BpiFrance. The funding comes on top of a 2011 $850K seed round raised from Orkos Capital, Jaina Capital & others. Founded in 2010 by Bruno Massiet du Biest, Mickaël Arias & Paul Wourlod, the startup today has shifted focus towards “drive to store” on mobile, enabling mobile shoppers to order on the go.

 "Thanks to this money , we can now further develop our product as well as our business”, says Plyce  president Bruno Massiet du Biest. “We need to improve the customer experience, working on topics such as the iBeacon and NFC to ensure traceability of the coupon. The goal is to be able to trace the circuit of a coupon and be able to 'burn' this coupon, if  one and the same coupon can only be used once, "he explains. Three people will be recruited in the coming weeks: one to develop the back office and two commercial people.

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