iBeacon and Bluetooth LE: An Introduction

Bluetooth beacons are a big deal. Whether you hear the term iBeacon or Bluetooth LE, the standard that will underpin a new generation of devices is turning the physical world into the new digital channel.

I’d argue that for the first time we see a true merging of the physical and digital: there is no offline anymore, and we’ll start looking up from our screens again and notice the world around us.

Instead of showrooming at your local Best Buy, your phone will point out specials on TVs in aisle four. Instead of searching for recipes online, recipes will come to us as we stand in front of the kale trying to figure out how to cook the stuff.

We’ve been presenting iBeacon and Bluetooth LE for a while now (well, a while in Internet terms – the tech has only really taken hold in the last few months) and we’ve discovered that while it’s simple to explain the technology, it’s not always easy to impart the implications.

I thought we’d share an overview we sometimes give to acquaint people with Bluetooth LE: it’s a very top-line summary rather than a technical “dive”, but maybe you’ll find it useful?

(And if you can’t see Slideshare in your browser, you can download a PDF copy here).

And I’d love to hear your comments or opinions: what kind of analogies do you use? When you talk about beacons, what’s the moment that you see the ‘light come on’? What do you say are the pros/cons?

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