Do you own a business and are involved in marketing? Then, BLE technology is for you. As beacons and beacon technology have been around us for some time, it has significantly impacted the Internet of things and modern marketing models. So, what is Beacon? Beacons are small and wireless high-tech devices, and here we are to discuss all of them in detail.

 

What is Beacon?

Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon technology is a small radio transmitter. It’s a kind of lighthouse that repeatedly transmits a constant signal to other devices. It emits visible light, broadcasts a radio signal, and combines letters and transmitted numbers. It works like a smartphone, an access point where you will see a beacon in range. It’s similar to sailors looking for a lighthouse to know where they are.

 

How does Beacon work?

 

What are Beacons, and How does it work?

  1. Beacon – A small wireless radio transmitter.
  2. Signals get detected by nearby devices.
  3. Signal sends ID number to your smart device.
  4. Later, your devices send ID to the Cloud server.
  5. Choose your response.
    • Example: You’re passing through a Shoestore, and sales are going on. The store places Beacon next to the counter to let you give an alert about the sale when you pass by that place
  6. Find something similar or buy the product now?
  7. Get more engaged with the store sales and get the perfect shoes for your feet.
 

How Beacon will help us,

 

let’s understand this by an example…

Let’s say you’re on a trip and arrive at the station. The station is huge, and you don’t know where to step in next. You’re confused about getting the right, reliable and clear direction. Also, you don’t see the language over there. At this moment, you want beacon technology to help you.

You get an app sign saying to download and use it at the train station. You need to download it and activate the app. Later the app takes the beacon ID and checks if the information is paired with the particular Beacon.

The app recognizes that you’re standing in front of any shop. After entering the destination, the app will generate a map to show you the way. If you turn down the wrong path, it redirects you to that particular path. The application also lets you know if there’s a coffee shop on the way if you’re looking for one. It does tell you in case there’s a delay in the train schedules.

 

How Beacons look like?

Beacons are generally simple and small devices. There’s no motherboard insides nor oodles of wires. You will get a CPU, batteries, and radio inside. They often use small lithium chip batteries, run via connected power such as USB plugs. It comes in different shapes and colors, including an accelerometer, sensor, temperature, or a unique add-on that can transmit signals.

 

What are Beacons used for?

 

1) To create a safer environment: 

  • We automate the people count and identify the locations of visitors and staff in case of emergency.
 

2) To understand workplace occupancy: 

  • We help reduce office space and improve utilization by offering employee satisfaction. We maintain productivity by measuring meeting-room and seat level occupancy.
 

3) To manage visitor flow: 

  • We help enhance security management by delivering a consistent process and offering a streamlined real-time visitor tracker. We provide security, safety, and compliance.
 

4) To create a carbon footprint and improve employee experience:

  • We monitor temperature, carbon dioxide, humidity, motion, light, and air quality in real-time.
 

5) To deliver seamless indoor navigation: 

  • We improve orientation with turn-by-turn navigation and design such rooms that you don’t miss their appointments.
 

How does a Bluetooth beacon transmit?

It transmits the unique ID number and tells the device what it’s up to. You must be thinking, it’s just the code name, but how it interacts is different. Let’s say, when a shopping mall installs beacons on their shop, they will undoubtedly register their ID on their dedicated app. It means a smartphone app can immediately recognize the incoming ID.

Next, what happens depends on the owner that is programmed to do so. One code could be to send coupons, the other to send navigation services. Also, there are possibilities that Beacon can connect to your exact location, and the rest depends on the program.

 

Types of Beacons

Multiple types of beacons are worth taking note of. It comes with different functions and helps avoid issues regarding incompatible and inefficient networks. A few of the types are listed below:

Standard Beacon

It’s one simple type of Beacon that’s typically used across retail shops and comes with a proximity function. The size of the typical route sometimes can be smaller. They are mainly boxy in shape and appear for LED indicators. People who are looking for the least complication can use this type.

Small Beacon

As the name suggests, its smaller form of Beacon is typically used in the size of a sticker or a debit card. It saves space and is based on the proximity system. It is the perfect type for items stored in containers or boxes and is pretty good to go with ease to tap on.

Video Beacon

It acts as an interface transmitter that works well for an establishment such as the bookstore, restaurant, etc. It is plugged into the screen to add input preferences, searches, and orders. It is mainly used to provide sign-in options for all visitors, employees, and more. This type is mainly used for banking machines for both online and offline banking purposes.

USB Beacon

It works similar to a portable/small beacon type that comes in the shape of your typical flash drive compatible with USB ports. It’s perfect for keeping track of the shipment of goods on route to delivery.

AI Beacon

The Beacon comes with a wide range of applications typically offered in the form of a video interface, which comes with cameras. The machine learning framework infrastructure comes with an algorithm that records, analyzes, and stores habits with the interaction between the screen and the user. It results in a more predictive exchange or map that trends entire customer demographics.

Parent Beacon

It comes with a central figure with a hive system and the biggest piece of equipment that often comes with bigger modems. Later, it connects and manages to smaller beacons, coordinating all of the data and transmitting it with the information the user asks for.

Dedicated Beacon

It offers the most durable beacons that come with true beacons used for places at risk and exposed to environmental punishment. It includes snow, rain, mud, and another interface that transmits data. Any other interruption can occur from time to time, along with extending the loss of communication while making sure it helps to overcome such conditions.

 

What is the future of Beacons?

As we look into the survey and projection, the beacon industry is ready to grow significantly within the next few years. It potentially surpasses $24 billion by 2024. It depends on how valuable the technology is and how it inherits potential for massive growth in the coming future.

On the other hand, beacons are more popular and correspond to the specific home of the IoT network. There are times when it’s challenging to trust entirely digital security measures and become interconnected as it is. The public sector comes with full advantage for both private and corporate sectors and is considered better and more effective.

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