iBeacon’s Impact on Events – CES 2014 Shows the Way

The introduction of iBeacon has got the technological world talking about it in 2013 but the adoption of iBeacon in Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2014 just got the Events world talking.

For those who are not aware, iBeacon is an indoor positioning system that enables an iOS device or compatible Android operating device to push notifications to supported devices in close proximity. It works on Low Energy Bluetooth (BLE), also known as Bluetooth 4.0.

At CES 2014, iBeacon was used for their Scavenger hunt game. Basically, it is a 3-step process on how it’s used.

First, the user has to download the CES2014 mobile application. After downloading, the user would have to navigate to the Scavenger Hunt section.


Next, the user would be shown the instructions page. A prompt would be shown if Bluetooth on the user’s device is not enabled. The instructions page would ask the user to find a location and look for lightning bolt symbol.



When the participant is within 10 metres of the symbol, a notification would be received and the colored badge will appear on the participant’s list. The list of badges are shown when the user press the Start Hunt button. The timer starts upon this action.



Impact of using iBeacon during events

The usage of gamification during events is not new. iBeacon offers an alternative to NFC-enabled programmes which I’ve seen at events, which allows targeting of iOS users, which is still in today’s context, a market leader in terms of users in many technologically advanced countries. The fact that iBeacon can support Android devices with BLE shows the potential in terms of outreach that the solution can have.  Also, for NFC, user-action is needed to initiate the contact whereas for iBeacon, the push notification is automated once the required proximity is triggered. This enables more opportunities for contextual marketing at events, such as the ability to gather information about an attendee when he or she is within the required proximity within a booth. The exhibitor can then strike the right kind of conversation, with the profile of the attendee already pushed to a mobile device, such as an iPad.  The exhibitor can also know which delegate to approach, as the required information gets pushed when the proximity trigger is enabled.

We certainly feel that iBeacon has more potential than NFC. Would you adopt iBeacon for your events? Drop your thoughts below. Would love to hear from you.