Celia Ampel Reporter- South Florida Business Journal
Earlier this summer, I was stopped at a traffic light on Le Jeune Boulevard when my phone buzzed with a message from the Walgreens app.
You’re right by a Walgreens store, it said. Come on in.
Sure enough, there was a Walgreens on the corner a few feet away. I chalked it up to sorcery — but I soon learned it was beacon technology.
Beacons are pieces of hardware that allow businesses to send location-based messages to consumers’ smartphones and tablets. Miami International Airport announced this week that it would fill its terminals with beacons, opening the door for airlines and retailers to target ads to nearby travelers.
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The technology represents a new wave in how companies can communicate with consumers. Here are three South Florida companies who use it:
The Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins introduced a new app this month that uses beacons in Sun Life Stadium to help fans have an easier experience.
If you’re headed toward a long concession line in the stadium, the app can tell you there’s a shorter one 200 feet to your left, for example.
The beacon technology also allows for fun surprises: If you walk past the stadium’s Dan Marino statue, the Dolphins app sends you a video of Marino career highlights.
BluVision, based in Fort Lauderdale, launched a beacon management platform for businesses Tuesday.
The platform, called BluZone, manages beacon hardware, software and network solutions for Android and the Apple iBeacon.
“As the beacon management market is expanding rapidly, we are focused on maintaining our strong growth in this sector, through innovation and the development of strategic partnerships,” CEO Jimmy Buchheim said in a news release.
Fort Lauderdale-based startup FlyInStyle uses beacon technology to spice up the airport experience.
As travelers walk through the terminal, retailers can send them push notifications advertising deals going on near them, CEO Amanda Anthony said at a September startup competition.