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iBeacons and the Library | David Lee King

I just ran across a post from DLK about libraries using ibeacons, a device that uses Bluetooth to send information to smartphones within a certain proximity. Library industry companies Bluubeam and Capira Technologies are using ibeacons.

Bluubeam sends out location-based messaging. For example, if you walk into the teens area of the library (and have the Bluubeam app on your mobile device), you might get a message about what’s happening in the teen section that day, or get a message about an upcoming teen event.

So think location-based promotion of events and your stuff.

Capira Technologies does location-based messaging.

My first thought were privacy issues (not to mention annoying-the-crap out of people issues). But the BluuBeam website says that they don’t collect any personal information and that to use the service people would need to opt in by getting their app first.

My mind couldn’t help but race with all of the possibilities. Then I kept reading and DLK went there with me. He goes on to list many great ideas but the one I had already started formulating was this:

Around-town tours. I’d love to see iBeacons connected to a historical walking tour, for example. This has the potential to be much better than portable headsets, and definitely better than QR codes.

There is so much history in Austin. It would be fantastic if the Austin Public Library and the Austin History Center would put together a walking tour using this to share information about each spot. How much would this cost? After initial set up and possibly a monthly charge for the service from Bluubeam, it would be a wonderful service for little effort, I would think. I didn’t see pricing information.

What other services could we provide using this kind of technology?
via iBeacons and the Library | David Lee King.

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