Why is iBeacon important? Matthew Gast answers.

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Aerohive's Matthew Gast is at it again, this time writing a book on iBeacon. Even better: In advance of his book, he is also writing a blog series on the same topic ... and he is asking for input on what to cover.

Please feel free to leave your questions here on the community, and Matthew will try to work the answers into his blog series, which kicks off today.

Here is Matthew's first installment: Why is iBeacon important?

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Amanda

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Posted 4 years ago

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Anoop Dawar

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Sounds exciting... do you see applications beyond traditional retail institutions? How will vendors handle the amount of data and the privacy issues surrounding iBeacons? 
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Matthew Gast

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Yes, I do!  I'll address some of this in a future post, but essentially anywhere there's applications for location, iBeacon might be valuable.  Outside of retail, it's pretty easy to see how they could be used in automating buildings, creating an indoor GPS-type function to help you find a gate in an airport or an exhibit in a museum, and automating functions like queue management or ticket checking.

Privacy is important, and some of that is going to be the responsibility of the ecosystem.  Apple and Google can set ground rules for how beacon information gets used, and disclosure by application developers is going to be important.
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Dale Buckey

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I look forward to reading Mr. Gast's discoveries about iBeacons
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Matthew Gast

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Is there anything in particular that you're interested in?  I can choose to write about topics that interest you earlier in the series!
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Dale Buckey

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I apologize for this reply being late.

I'm comfortable with the technology aspect.

The big issue is how many notifications/texts will the retail public put up with, and or appreciate? Everyone who creates a beacon message will think their message is important. Will the recipient feel the same way?
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Matthew Gast

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Don't worry about late replies.  We can keep the series going as long as the thread is alive!

My own view on this is that iBeacon has one serious advantage in that messages are displayed by applications.  That makes iBeacon inherently opt-in, especially since on iOS you can even choose whether individual applications are allowed to receive location information.  If you don't like notifications, uninstall the app or revoke its location privileges.
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Caspar Strandberg

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Du You see iBeacon integrated in future Aerohive AP ́s?
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Matthew Gast

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Aerohive doesn't talk about the long-term product roadmap on our community, so I can't answer that question.
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Andrew MacTaggart, Champ

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My interest is in the use of iBeacon's and AppleTVs and bonjour services offered by the AppleTVs.

I think it would be cool if an AP had bluetooth v4 capabilities to learn the bonjour services from a APPLETV in proximity and then turn around and offer those services to locally connect clients.

but I could be dreaming.

A
(Edited)
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Matthew Gast

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That would be cool.  We know that ATVs have BLE.  I'm not sure whether they can act as an iBeacon, though.  Not that that would affect your suggestion, since anything that would do iBeacon-type functions would have to be a full-on generic BLE interface.
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Johny Travolta

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iBeacons, - is only for Apple. Apple, - shares only about 8-10% of the smartphone market , everything else,-  Android... So? :)
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Johny Travolta

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Cool to know! Do you think that we need new APs with Bluetooth capabilities or with simple software upgrade we should be able to decode/send iBeacons from our APs?
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Matthew Gast

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It's a bit more than a software upgrade.  iBeacons use Bluetooth, and therefore you need the Bluetooth hardware to be an iBeacon.  So yes, you'd need either a new AP, or an AP that is capable of having Bluetooth hardware installed.
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Johny Travolta

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Hi,

So as I see You have announced iBeacons integration for your APs:
http://www.aerohive.com/company/press-releases/aerohive-delivers-world%E2%80%99s-first-ibeacon-and-a...

Which APs will support this? Is there a new model (as you mentioned need hardware update)
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Matthew Gast

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It's not a new AP.  iBeacons are implemented on top of Bluetooth Low Energy, and that's easy to add in a USB interface... like the RadBeacon!
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Johny Travolta

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so, ibeacon usb + aerohive AP = aerohive ibeacon AP ? ;)