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Proximity tech takes off via Apple's iBeacon and Qualcomm's Gimbal

Matt Hamblen | Dec. 10, 2013
Retailers, sports teams and transit providers can use tech to get ads, directions, sale information and other info to in-venue customers

Apple could put more than 250 million Apple iBeacons in U.S. stores by the end of 2014, according to TechCrunch, which noted that every iOS device since the iPhone 4S and iPad third generation is already capable of being either an iBeacon receiver or transmitter. That means about 190 million iOS devices are capable of becoming iBeacons.

Karen Webster, CEO of Market Platform Dynamics, noted in a recent study that Apple may use its mobile commerce capabilities to dominate that market.

Apple has already innovated with Passbook, with allows barcode enabled payments, she said, adding that iBeacon is more merchant friendly than NFC. She said that it would cost a typical retail store half as much to equip the space with iBeacons than to put NFC tags on products.


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