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What are Estimote’s products?
They are essentially tiny, low power computers attached to walls or objects in the physical world. Using proximity technologies they detect human presence and behavior and trigger pre-programmed actions delivering contextual and personalized experiences.
How exactly does it work?
Each beacon has a Bluetooth® Low Energy transmitter. It broadcasts tiny radio signals over the air containing unique, location-specific data. Modern smartphones constantly scan for these signals. If they enter their range an associated app responds with the desired action.
For example, it can fetch content that is tied to a user’s profile or micro-location. Apps can also push to the cloud user data or statistics. Personalized content is displayed as a notification or directly in the app. Nearby screens can also respond with relevant information.
It’s an opt-in tech to enhance user experience
Magical experiences and context-aware interactions are possible with compatible apps downloaded by those who opted-in. These apps are built on top of the Estimote SDKs for iOS or Android, where proximity, security and cloud technologies are tied together.
Building an OS for the physical world
This technology stack is making phones smarter, making locations more interactive, even giving ordinary objects a way to communicate information with smart phones or other devices. Estimote has given smartphones extra senses to “see” more of the world around them and know more about their context, opening up an endless set of possibilities for richer, more personalized experiences.
What do I do once I have beacons?
Get Estimote Apps
Use apps and learn everything there is to learn about your Estimote Beacons! From the very basics of detecting proximity, to gathering data from sensors, to securing your beacon network, to inspiring use cases. Get Estimote app & Estimote Edu app – Avaliable on the App Store & Google Play
Estimote SDK and Cloud tie everything together by granting apps access to additional features, including security layer, fleet management, and indoor location.
Create your first app with templates
Check out the Apps section of Estimote Cloud to see App Templates, where you can download a working code sample in just a few clicks. The templates have the Estimote SDK integrated, as well as your beacons’ UUIDs and API tokens for accessing Estimote Cloud API.
Create app using our SDK
See other examples and the full Estimote Beacons SDK on our GitHub pages. All Estimote Beacons are supported by our iOS and Android SDKs.
Estimote Proximity Beacons
If you are building simple proximity applications start with Estimote Proximity Beacons – the most popular beacons on the market. They support both iBeacon™ and Eddystone™. For touch experiences, they also have NFC built in.
Estimote Proximity Beacons
Lifetime : 2 years
Range : 70 m
Packets : iBeacon™ or Eddystone™
Features : motion & temperature sensor, NFC
Estimote is like a bridge between your app and the physical world, and now, these interactions can be based not only on proximity, but also on the very explicit gesture of touching a beacon.
Proximity includes all the use cases where context is provided within certain areas. Let’s say a user enters a shop and receives a “Welcome” notification, or a coupon for a new flavor pops up when you walk by your favorite ice cream shop.
This most popular approach involves “tagging” certain areas (a hotel lobby, a restaurant table, an airport gate, etc.) with a “marker”—a beacon—recognizable by smartphones.
You can tune beacon’s broadcasting power to adjust the range of this marker. Each beacon has a unique identifier. Your app can simply detect it in the proximity, read its identifier to figure out which marker it is, and act accordingly.
Proximity approaches can even be used to provide very basic indoor positioning. Since you know which markers are nearby, you can plot the user’s rough position on a map, and provide basic instructions (“go to the second floor”) to guide them around.
And with Physical Web introduced recently, you don’t even need an app anymore—just “mark” an area with a beacon broadcasting Eddystone-URL and take users to a website for more information about the place.
For the vast majority of use cases, you don’t really need super accurate indoor navigation to deliver location-based context. Want to know which table the customer is sitting at? Just place a beacon on it,and don’t worry about floor plans, tables changing their placement, etc. Easy as that!
Estimote Proximity Beacons Features
How do I choose?
Think about your use case:
If you want an app aware of where the user is (e.g. store, museum, restaurant), go with beacons;
Estimote Beacons offer long-lasting battery life and great range, and are usually put on walls, tables, shelves and other static objects.
Choose Location Beacons for long range (max 200 m), maximum battery life and responsiveness, multi-packet advertising, and GPIO connector Or go for Estimote Proximity Beacons for short range (max 70 m), the most cost-effective and popular beacons for developers.
Estimote Proximity Beacons Range
- If you want an app aware of what the user interacts with (e.g. a dog, an item on display, a fridge in the kitchen), go with stickers;
Estimote Stickers are much smaller size than regular beacons, which makes it easy to stick them to everyday objects: wallet, laptop, bike, etc. This allows mobile apps to detect these objects—we call them Nearables.
2. If you want your users to interact with TV screens and displays, go with Mirror;
3. If you don’t know yet what you’re going to build and just want to test the technology, go with beacons: they’re easier to pick up.
These are a few requirements a mobile device needs to meet to be able to receive signal from beacons.
It has to support Bluetooth Smart (also known as Bluetooth Low Energy or BLE) and needs Bluetooth enabled to be able to detect beacons. Most mobile devices today ship with Bluetooth on by default.
You can find a comprehensive list of BLE-compatible devices on the official Bluetooth site.If content in the app is fetched from the cloud, Wi-Fi or cellular connection is also required. It’s also mandatory if the app uses Estimote Cloud API.
BLE support was introduced in iOS 7 and Android 4.3. You need devices running these or higher versions of mobile systems to interact with beacons. Also, remember that it’s not the smartphone itself that triggers actions based on proximity to beacons. Rather than that, it’s an app that detects beacons by using Estimote SDK or native frameworks by Apple (for iBeacon) and Google (for Eddystone). In case of iOS devices, the app also needs to ask for permission to use Location Services. How to obtain Location Services authorization for iBeacon apps?
In theory, any device with BLE support can detect beacons. However, to ‘interpret’ the signal, it needs Estimote SDK, Apple’s Core Location, or Google’s Nearby API. If you want non-iOS/Android devices and tools to work with beacons (for example you want to use PhoneGap, or build an app for Raspberry Pi), you might need to create these tools yourself.
HOW DO STICKERS WORK?
Stickers broadcast data packets using two protocols: iBeacon and Nearable. This allows to include more data in the packet itself and still benefit from all the iBeacon features—like putting your app’s icon on the lock screen.
IBEACON, EDDYSTONE & NEARABLES : WHAT ARE THESE?
Beacon is only a piece of hardware broadcasting radio signal. On top of that, there are different APIs, SDKs, and protocols that you’ll be using to bring microlocation to your apps.
iBeacon™ is a communication protocol developed by Apple on top of Bluetooth Smart technology. It allows developers to create mobile apps aware of location context provided by beacons. Estimote Beacons are compatible with iBeacon.
WHAT IS EDDYSTONE?
Just like iBeacon™ is a Bluetooth 4.0 communication protocol designed by Apple, Eddystone™ is an open Bluetooth 4.0 protocol from Google.
EDDYSTONE & IBEACON COMPARISON
While iBeacon is officially supported by iOS devices only, Eddystone has official support for both iOS and Android.
Eddystone is an open protocol, i.e., its specification is available for everyone.
The advertising packet is naturally different from that of iBeacon. In fact, Eddystone is designed to support multiple data packet types, starting with two: Eddystone-UID and Eddystone-URL.
There’s a third type of packet: Eddystone-TLM, as in “telemetry.” This packet is broadcast alongside the Eddystone-UID or Eddystone-URL packets and contains beacon’s “health status” (e.g., battery life). This is mainly intended for fleet management, and because of that, the TLM “service” packet is broadcast less frequently than the “data” packets.
iBeacon provides two API methods for apps to detect iBeacons devices: ranging, which works only when the app is active, and provides proximity estimations; and monitoring, which works even if the app is not running, and provides a binary “in range” and “out of range” information.
Eddystone support in the Estimote iOS and Android SDKs is based on a single method at this time: Eddystone discovery, which is similar to iBeacon’s ranging. It provides proximity estimates and works only when the app is active.
Nearables are everyday items (well, not only items: Winston the English Bulldog can also be a nearable!) turned smart objects. Thanks to the power of Estimote Stickers and the cloud, anything can broadcast data about its location, motion, and environment.
Startups and Fortune 500 companies alike use estimote’s platform to build apps that change how we interact with the world around us – from shopping malls, to the office, to museums, to concerts and beyond.
Pick up the latest bestseller in your local bookstore and your phone will automatically display reviews.
Try on a jacket in-store and watch the shelf display update with available style options and which purse matches best.
Or even tag a sticker to a bottle of chardonnay in your fridge to be notified when it’s cooled to exactly the right temperature.
ESTIMOTE STICKERS COULD BE A DREAM COME TRUE FOR MARKETERS,
Online businesses have analytic that will tell them exactly what been browsed and how many times, which gives them an insight into which are the more popular products. this kind of give them an edge over brick and mortar stores where inanimate products sit on the shelves and business owners have absolutely zero idea of which products are the ‘most viewed’. This is an area where can help. It has adhesive backing for sticking it to anywhere.
BUT WHAT DOES IT DO WITH RELATE TO RETAIL BUSINESSES?
If attached the Stickers to products like sneakers, you can now know how many times and how often customers have picked them up (which often suggest interest in the products) and you can use these data to make informed decision on the shelf space priority for the different products.
Similarly, users can also stick one to their dog’s collar and be in the know of the pet whereabouts, well, that’s provided you are in the range, of course. Working with your custom app, it can even be customized to track your wallet, phone, laptop and more. So basically, what Estimote is proposing is a technology, which company refers to as ‘nearables’, that has a seemingly endless possibilities. All you need is for someone to create the custom app and tells it what you want it to do.
You will be able to access default object classes (interaction, motion, ownership, type of object) or set up your own behavior and access other classes or methods as a developer — e.g, the motion sensor on a purse should trigger different actions than the motion sensor on a sticker attached to your dog.
By knowing the type of the object, better tools can be provided at the platform level to interact with those objects. Of course developers can create other gestures dynamically responding to the proximity of various objects. And all of this code can be uploaded to Github and shared with the community! It will be faster and easier than ever to build contextually aware apps on top of beacons.
INFORMATION INCLUDED IN NEARABLE PACKET:
- nearable ID (8 bytes)
- is the nearable in motion (and for how long)
- is the nearable still (and for how long)
- raw X, Y, Z accelerometer readings
- broadcasting power (used to calibrate the proximity estimations)
- battery voltage (can be used to estimate the battery level)
- firmware version
DEVELOPING APPS WITH NEARABLES SUPPORT
Building apps interacting with nearables follows the same logic as with iBeacon. You can also perform Region Monitoring and Ranging, but instead of iBeacon ID (UUID, Major, and Minor), you use Nearable ID and Nearable Type. If you already have some experience with iBeacon, using stickers will be a breeze.
One addition you’ll love are the Triggers. They allow to take all the contextual data (nearable type, orientation, motion, ambient temperature, time of day, etc.) and turn it into if-this-then-that logic with just a few lines of code.
|BATTERY LIFE||2 years|
|IBEACON™ OR EDDYSTONE™ PACKETS||1 at a time|
|ADDITIONAL PACKETS||Connectivity, Telemetry|
|BUILT-IN SENSORS||Motion, Temperature|
|ADDITIONAL TECH||Programmable NFC|
Estimote Beacons-iBeacon style Bluetooth Smart LE sensors
Estimote Bluetooth Smart Beacon iBeacon compatible
Estimote Indoor Location
Estimote Mirror-The world’s first video enabled beacon
Estimote Smart Beacons welcome to the contextual computing era!
Estimote Sticker Beacons- Introducing Nearables
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