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Simon to Implement Bluetooth Beacons at 240 Malls, Outlets

Mobiquity Networks' Mobi-Beacon system will allow shoppers at Simon malls to automatically receive information and offers from merchants.
By Claire Swedberg
Tags: NFC, Retail

When a shopper comes within range of a beacon, his or her phone receives the unique ID transmitted by that beacon, and any relevant apps forward that ID to the Mobi-Beacon software, along with the phone's identifier, via the Internet. The Mobi-Beacon software, operating on Mobiquity's cloud-based server, identifies the phone's location based on the beacon's ID number and shares the location data with the app. The app can then identify what media content it should transmit back to the phone, based on that individual's location. For example, if the user had an app for a specific coffee shop, and if the phone was located within the food court area, he or she could receive a coupon or other promotional information from the restaurant, as well as instructions indicating where to find that shop.

Retailers pay for the Mobiquity SDK, which they can use to access the Mobi-Beacon software. They can then employ the resulting location data to initiate the sending of local messaging and other app-based information to consumers, based on their location. Mobi-Beacon "gives context to the app experience," Meckley says, adding that "for retailers who embrace [beacon technology], this opens a tremendous level of new experiences and engagements."

For instance, stores could deploy multiple beacons supplied and installed by Mobiquity throughout the various departments within their premises, and then send data regarding discounts being offered within a specific department. They could also link this information with the historical purchasing data of a particular individual, in order to further tailor the promotional data that person receives. The solution, Meckley says, "basically facilitates contextually relevant engagements with the customer."

The installation at all 240 of Simon's malls is expected to be completed within the next six months, Meckley reports. In the meantime, he says, Mobiquity is working with other companies in the retail and entertainment industries, as well as with universities, to install the technology for a variety of purposes. Meckley indicates, however, that he is not at liberty to discuss any further details.

A Simon spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.

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