Beacons are moving out of the pilot phase and helping retailers and marketers revolutionise in-store shopping

The beacon — a low-cost device that retailers can attach to store shelves or walls to communicate with customer smartphones — is coming into its own. Beacon programs are quickly moving out of beta phase and becoming an integral part of the retail industry.

Beacons can be used to power indoor maps, payments services, and location-sensitive product catalogues. There are many different beacon hardware vendors and systems — including Apple’s iBeacon system — but they all share some basic characteristics. Namely, they allow retailers and event organisers to efficiently communicate indoors, without a need for GPS.

In a new report from BI Intelligence, we gauge how far along beacons have advanced as an indoor-communication technology. Consider:

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In full, the report:

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