Lately, I have quickly went through Matt Gast's book on iBeacon: Building Applications with iBeacon. This is a very concise book on the topic, only 80 pages. It gives a quick overview about iBeacon technology mainly focused on iOS.
Here are the book notes I took:
One of the earliest developers of beacon technology. Estimote beacons have fixed configuration parameters and, in particular, administrators cannot set the UUID.
RadBeacon is a $29 USB dongle that performs the transmission functions of an iBeacon. All you have to supply is USB power. Configuration of the beacon’s numbers is done through an app.
Kontakt sells an ARM-based iBeacon as well as tools for manag‐ ing iBeacons and analyzing user interactions with them.
Also compatible with android
Gelo’s Beacons are waterproof and designed for both indoor and outdoor use, and the batteries can be replaced manually using simple tools.
- Mac (Yosemite stops supporting Mac as iBeacon)
- iOS devices
- Raspberry Pi
- Arduino: BLEduino, BLE Mini from RedBearLab
- Nordic Semi nRF1822
- A personal notification beacon for the iPhone. It comes with a beacon device and Geohopper for iOS. It sends notification based on your geo-location. It also integrates with web services for automated workflow.
There are lots of developer util tooks that turns iOS devices into iBeacons. The list can go on and on, here are some apps I found in the app store:
- Beacon Broadcaster
- Locate Beacon (from Radius Networks)
- Beacon Manager
- My Beacon
- Beacon Toolkit
- Beacon Harvester: help you find and save iBeacons around you
- Beacon Bits
One interesting use case for iBeacon is the treasure hunt games. There are several demoes during the mobile developer conferences, very interesting to connect mobile and real world in a playful way. For example, Beacon Scavenger Hunt (from Radius Networks) is a treasure hunt game to collect scavenger hunt’s badges.
It was very bad that Yosemite does not support turning a Mac into an iBeacon. Maybe this is one of the bugs with Yosemite?
Mavericks as an iBeacon: https://github.com/mttrb/BeaconOSX
a nice thread on StackOverflow about turning your mac into iBeacon: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/19410398/turn-macbook-into-ibeacon
10 things to do with iBeacon: http://blog.twocanoes.com/post/68861362715/10-awesome-things-you-can-do-today-with-ibeacons