Beacons are small wireless, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices that enable a number of Internet of Things (IoT) solutions in workplaces, the industrial space and healthcare. What are they exactly and why do marketers believe that it’s worth investing in them?
Bluetooth Low Energy Beacons – what are they?
As the name suggests, BLE beacons are tiny wireless devices that operate based on Bluetooth Low Energy. They continuously transmit radio signals that are received and processed by nearby devices like smartphones or access points.
Main applications of BLE beacons
If the idea of indoor positioning beacons still sounds like Greek to you, don’t worry. We’ll try to give you an example to illustrate how it works.
Imagine that you are at an airport in Italy but you don’t speak Italian and it seems to you that no one around you speaks English. You have no idea where to go, and additionally your plane takes off within an hour so you don’t have time to lose. Fortunately, the airport manager predicted situations like that and decided to invest in beacons. On one of the walls you see a big sign advertising the airport’s app, so you download it. This app has the beacon ID and processes the radio signals to determine your location and provide you with necessary information. Thanks to it, you get clear directions in English and you know where to go. On your way, the app notifies you about nearby shops and discounts to encourage you to make a purchase.
Apart from the example above, BLE beacons are used to:
- Refine office space utilization by monitoring room, and office occupancy. This helps to minimize unnecessary renting costs and ensure that employees have appropriate working conditions that meet their needs.
- Control humidity, temperature, air quality, and carbon dioxide levels in the office to reduce carbon footprint and take necessary action when needed
- Determine employee locations in case of emergency to ensure that everyone is safe
- Monitor office visitors to increase employee security
- Help clients and employees navigate the office so that they can easily get to designated rooms (this is particularly useful when talking about sizable spaces)
Beacons in workspaces – the takeaway
Beacons are intelligent devices that are appreciated by marketers looking for a discreet way to attract new customers. As shown by the example discussed in today’s entry, they can help to advertise the range in a non-intrusive manner, while providing users with the needed support. Apart from the commerce and marketing fields, BLE beacons are willingly used by entrepreneurs who want to make their office space more intelligent and efficient.