FlyBeacon: Travel Smart with iBeacon

Flybeacon Prototype Screen

iBeacon technology will follow you everywhere – from the store to the airport lounge and into your luggage. We envision a future for iBeacon in which it isn’t just the big chains that drive a new vision for the smart hotel, but also the big disrupters like Airbnb.

Now, a scrappy team at MashHacks, sponsored by Emirates and run by the folks at Mashable has come up with FlyBeacon.

The project promised to reinvent the airport:

At the airport, FlyBeacon provides the traveler with indoor wayfinding, and nearby promotional offers based on their proximity. This enhances the traveler’s overall experience by directing them to their gate (indoor GPS), informing them how much time they have (alleviating stress), security wait times, and also serving them promotional discounts and information based on their proximity to various areas, vendors, and products.

The benefit for Emirates airline? Analytics and a better travel experience:

As each passenger’s luggage is also been tagged with a beacon, it possible for the traveler to receive a notification the exact moment their checked luggage enters the baggage claim, upon their arrival at their destination. It is also possible for the airport’s logistical team to be alerted if a piece of luggage falls off their one of their sorting belts or baggage carts (which will now be equipped with a sensor). A staggering 25 million checked bags go missing every year – our solution will drastically reduce this number, increase efficiency, and ensure customer confidence.

The team proposed that the data that could be collected includes:

  • Behavior Analytics (@ Airport) – Footpath – Consumer Patterns
  • Purchasing Activity – Consumer Promo Redemptions (@ Airport + City)
  • “Smart” Luggage Stats (@ Airport) – Location – Alerts – Baggage Claim
  • Feedback – Customer Satisfaction Data

Just a hackathon project? Maybe. But we know of several projects where entire airports are being fitted out with beacons.

Whether beacons can stop your flight being delayed, however, would be the ultimate win. Keep dreaming on that one.

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