iBeacon Lets Stores Get Within Inches of You.











I like location technology when it comes to GPS and driving a car. I even like it when I’m walking the streets of Manhattan trying to find some location. I think it’s one of man’s greatest inventions. Women across America are probably in the same camp as me. No more getting lost or nagging a certain gender to ask for directions. It’s a lifesaver.

But location data that recognizes you as you stand in front of a TV debating a purchase in a store is a little creepy, don’t you agree? Are you okay with stores using facial recognition and scanning your face as you walk in so you can have a personalized shopping experience? Stores already store enormous amounts of data on your past purchases and frequency so are these innovation technologies invading your privacy and taking things a little too far?

Apple just unveiled iBeacon, a feature that uses Bluetooth 4.0, an iOS 7 location based technology that has sensors that can detect within inches how close your phone is. Inches!

Imagine standing in front of that TV and being offered a coupon for that very TV. Then walking several aisles over to look at a laptop and being served information on the laptop. iBeacon would everywhere you went in the store and could be beaming you things. I am a huge Star Trek fan and always wanted to be “beamed up” but I’m not sure I’m ready for this much technology integrated into my life.

iBeacon could help me navigate a store but I think I’d prefer the old-fashioned way of asking a clerk. After all, I’d hate to see him/her lose their job because they were replaced by technology. I like human interaction.

iBeacon’s ability to interact with anything you come close to means you could enter the movie theater and have your tickets beamed to you. If only it could deliver the popcorn and drink to my seat.

Regardless iBeacon technology is being rolled out to grocery stores and if you opt in you will be able to get rewards, notification and coupons all based on where you happen to be.

Personally I’m not ready for companies to get within inches everywhere I am.  Every app I download wants to “turn on the location” service. I rarely do. This is one case where I don’t think I’ll be an early adopter. I think I’ll stick to downloading my coupons on line and using the good old key tags that still exist.


Photo: FreeDigitalPhotos.net Artur84

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