iBeacons & UX: What they are and why you should care


Published on

Until iBeacon, the iPhone couldn’t figure out its location in enclosed space within short distances. With iOS 7, over 200M iOS devices have access to micro location awareness in the presence of compatible Bluetooth sensors. The likely popularity of this technology will allow for the design of new experiences connecting people and precise locations, especially indoors.

1 Comment
No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

iBeacons & UX: What they are and why you should care

  1. 1. CAPTECH iBeacons & UX What they are and why you should care 04 January 2014 @mbadger D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S TALK
  2. 2. What is iBeacon? D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 2
  3. 3. What does it do? Microlocation © Josh Valcarcel – http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2013-12/12/apple-ibeacon/viewgallery/331114 D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 3
  4. 4. What’s new about that? Proximity sensor Ambient light sensor Accelerometer Magnetometer Gyroscope GPS Cellular WiFi Bluetooth D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 4
  5. 5. Why Bluetooth LE? D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 5
  6. 6. Why proximity awareness matters Context D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 6
  7. 7. Why proximity awareness matters 01:18   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUIqfjpInxY   D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 7
  8. 8. Beacon capabilities Entry or exit Far : 30m Near : 2m Immediate < .5m Region monitoring Range finding D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 8
  9. 9. What’s required? Location awareness •  Notifications •  Bluetooth enabled •  App •  D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 9
  10. 10. Some examples (story links embedded) at Techcrunch   at CNET   at Techcrunch   D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S at The Verge   10
  11. 11. Macy’s pilot via shopkick 00:54   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CipsLFB8KFk   D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 11
  12. 12. Paypal 01:16   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g8h_i8qv1FY   D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 12
  13. 13. What do you think? D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S 13
  14. 14. Thank you. @mbadger @CapTechListens D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S
  15. 15. References Good Info on How iBeacon(s) Work Good Use Case Overviews •  http://daveaddey.com/?p=1252 •  http://www.forbes.com/sites/anthonykosner/ 2013/12/15/the-internet-of-ithings-apples-ibeaconis-already-in-almost-200-million-iphones-and-ipads/ –  Excellent details about how iBeacons work, leans technical, but is very clear on capabilities •  http://blog.nerdery.com/2013/11/nerdery-labsibeacon-experiments/ –  Great details about how iBeacon works, as well as case study videos •  http://www.oho.com/blog/apple-ibeacon-howdesign-and-build-ibeacon-apps –  How to design UX with iBeacon •  http://gigaom.com/2013/12/28/the-guiding-ibeaconhelping-brands-navigate-customer-relationships/ •  http://www.fastcolabs.com/3021833/forget-coiniphone-payments-now-possible-thanks-to-ibeacons •  http://www.automatedhome.co.uk/apple/appleibeacons-explained-smart-home-occupancysensing-solved.html •  –  "It is important to note that although iBeacon uses Bluetooth to communicate, a user does not need to pair with each beacon (unlike your Bluetooth headset).” •  http://stackoverflow.com/questions/19477044/ ibeacon-in-the-background-use-cases D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S http://beekn.net/2013/12/5-ux-predictions-foribeacons-2014/ •  http://www.wired.com/design/2013/12/4-use-casesfor-ibeacon-the-most-exciting-tech-you-haventheard-of/
  16. 16. Slide Notes Slide 2! iBeacon is an Apple-branded protocol built on top of Bluetooth LE that dictates how Bluetooth sensors may communicate with iOS devices. •  So, “beacons" are wireless sensors (often very small) that transmit data to your iPhone using Bluetooth Low Energy. •  The protocol is tightly constrained, by design. Very little data gets sent—4 identifiers, in fact—even though BT allows for data as robust as audio streaming. Slide 3! iBeacon allows apps on your iPhone to have access to microlocation. In short: it creates short-range, proximity awareness. This device is near that sensor (or those sensors). That’s it. •  iBeacon gives you enough information to identify the sensors in range…all the other intelligence (and value) must be built into the app or into the app plus a cloud/internet service. Slide 4! Since the iPhone 4s, the iPhone has been able to use a number of sensors and antennae to understand it’s environment and the relationship to it. Slide 5! •  Bluetooth LE is also known as Bluetooth 4.0 and Bluetooth Smart. •  Very low energy consumption, with BTLE in particular. •  Better range than NFC and wider device adoption. None of the several hundred million iOS devices support NFC, for example, while about 200M support Bluetooth LE and, with iOS 7, iBeacon. D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S Slide 6! Until iBeacon, the iPhone couldn’t figure out its location in enclosed space within short- medium-range distances. It still doesn’t: it understands only that it is near one or more beacons. The location of that beacon in the store (or anywhere, for that matter) is not inherent to the beacon or the iPhone. That information must be programmed and maintained in a database somewhere. Slide 7! An iPhone (or similarly capable Android phone) with Bluetooth LE enabled enters the broadcast range of a beacon (around 30 meters). The beacon is constantly broadcasting its identifiers. When the iPhone intercepts that communication, it routes the IDs to the relevant app, which then displays notifications or responds in other more interesting ways once the app is open. Slide 8! Beacons can flag when BTLE devices enter or exit their broadcast region, and they can be used to estimate distance based on signal strength. Slide 9! The failing of most of the articles about iBeacon is that they convey the sense that the beacon (or the physical object or location to which it is attached) will suddenly become smart. That is not the case: the beacon itself transmits VERY limited information about itself. The app or service layer behind the app must make use of that information and generate relevant interactions for the user. In order for the retailer to know who you are, they must do more than install passive beacons, they must install beacon aware software that reads your smartphone as a beacon.
  17. 17. Slide Notes Slide 10! Though iBeacon implementations are not widespread, there are a few, limited examples out there (though their number seems to be increasing weekly). Slide 11! Macy’s has leveraged a 3rd party provider, shopkick, to implement an iBeacon system. There are are a few issues worth noting: •  With this implementation, shopkick owns the loyalty program, not Macy’s. •  Consumers are asked to trust a brand with whom they may not be familiar, rather than more established brand with which they have an existing relationship (i.e., Macy’s). •  Unless shopkick can integrate with Macy’s POS system, the contactless payment will remain elusive. Slide 12! There are several sticking points to overcome, but the key one may be the download of an app which will provide the actual benefit of beacons. This is why it makes more sense for top-line brands to support beacon: trust the brand to provide meaningful benefits via the app, and then trust that permissions around location awareness and notifications will engender value not abuse. Established, innovative payment processors, such as PayPal and Square, may have a leg up for these very reasons. D I G I TA L S O LU T I O N S