That’s just the way it works, Apple included. In fact, our favorite iDevice maker is working on some clever new ways to track customers and customize targeted advertising that works on proximity– not what you’re viewing online, but where you stand in the store.
iBeacon Because iCan
Components of Apple’s new iBeacon technology have been around on iPhones since the iPhone 4S. That means there may already be 200-million iDevices which can be targeted by Apple.
This is mobile proximity shopping and marketing and Apple could make it part of the next great thing.
To Google, you’re the product. To Apple, you’re the target.
iBeacon on iPhones back to iPhone 4S use Bluetooth Low Energy, or Bluetooth LE. BLE is used to receive wireless signals while you shop in an Apple Store (coming soon to a gazillion other stores near you).
As you walk around the store you can be treated to a shopping list of nearby specials. Yes, the technology can pinpoint where you are from up to 100 feet down to less than a foot using micro location.
Walk around a store. Then pull out your iPhone. Specials ads and promotions are right there on the screen. Think in-store navigation tips (flashing blue light special on aisle 4) and on-the-fly discounts as you walk.
Tracking Me, Tracking You
iBeacon and BLE also means you can be tracked, followed, promoted to, and eventually pay for purchases using your iPhone. Apple is eating its own dog food by installed BLE and iBeacon in the company’s own stores. It’s only a hop, skip, and a jump before Apple ties iBeacon to your iTunes account so you can pay without whipping out a credit card.
It also means we are being targeted and tracked like never before. It isn’t simply web browsing with advertisements that know our internet connection’s IP address. iBeacon can be setup to know exactly who you are and where you are.
Like it or not, you’re a target. Get ready. Apple and other companies are setting their sights on you.