Two supermarket retailers in the US have started using the latest iPhone technology to guide shoppers around the store, sending them reminders, rewarding them for browsing certain items and offering deals.
Watch this video explaining how the service works:
Apple’s iBeacon technology was initially launched last year to guide its users around Apple stores, acting as a ‘virtual assistant’.
Now, mobile shopping startup InMarket is beginning to use the platform in more than 150 grocery stores across the US.
The move means that the 20 million people who use InMarket’s apps on its Mobile to Mortar platform will be able to get grocery list reminders, deals, and reward points at supermarkets like Safeway and Giant Eagle.
To use the technology, shoppers have to opt in by downloading specific apps, like InMarket’s Checkpoints.
InMarket’s iBeacon feature will be in more than 150 stores in Seattle, San Francisco, and Cleveland within the next two weeks; and the company plans to expand to thousands of grocery and retail stores by the end of 2014.
The location-sensing technology works by sending off short-range transmitters that notify mobile devices when they are within 100 feet of a beacon. This type of location-sensing technology can be used for indoor navigation, automatic ticketing, and location-relevant promotions.
Starbucks, Macy’s, and American Airlines are also said to be testing the technology.