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Target tests beacon technology in 50 stores, plans to expand nationwide later this year

By midian182
Aug 6, 2015
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  1. Target, one of the world’s biggest retailers, has announced that it will start rolling out beacon technology in 50 stores nationwide. The devices transmit information about deals and recommendations directly to customers’ iPhones via Bluetooth, which appear as push notifications or in-app updates.

    In order to use the service, shoppers have to opt-in and agree to receive the notifications on the latest version of Target’s app. The company says that it will limit these notifications to two per shopping trip, so as not to overwhelm customers with alerts.

    “We’re excited to start using beacon technology to offer real-time, relevant content and services that can help make shopping at Target easier and more fun,” said Target’s president of online and mobile, Jason Goldberger, in a blog post. “This is another way Target is bridging mobile and stores, and using digital to enhance the in-store shopping experience. We look forward to seeing how our guests respond to what we’ve built.”

    The technology is being rolled out in 50 stores, in Chicago, Denver, Minneapolis, New York City, Pittsburgh, Portland, San Francisco and Seattle. The retailer says it plans to use the feedback from this initial deployment to “enhance and adapt” the service before it expands to more locations later this year.

    Target said it is working on implementing additional features using the technology, such as enabling a customer to call for a store employee via the app and shopping lists which can reorganize themselves based on a user's location.

    A number of other companies have already begun testing the beacon technology; Macy’s, GameStop, and McDonald’s are all experimenting with the devices, and real estate developer Simon said it is deploying beacons in nearly 240 malls and shopping centers.

    Currently, the technology only works with the iPhone version of the app, although Android support is in the works.

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  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,498   +2,048

    And this is supposed to be good news? Such a thing would irritate me no end so it's a good thing they're experimenting on iFans first, they tend to be pretty thick skinned. When it comes here I'll make sure Bluetooth is turned off on my device before I set foot in a store who thinks they're doing me a favor.
     
  3. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 1,038   +269

    Wow. Is Target hurting? Is desperation?

    I can see it now. Ad pushed to shopper's phone. Shopper becomes glassy-eyed, extends arms in zombie fashion, heads to shelf, picks up item, cashes out with item, then in the parking lot, wakes up and says "how did I get this??" I can see Target execs drooling over this essential app.
     
  4. SirGCal

    SirGCal TS Maniac Posts: 365   +136

    And yet another reason I would never sync my bluetooth with anything like that... EVER... But also BT is turned off unless I need the phone in the car.
     

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