Motorola Solutions gets serious about location-based platforms

Motorola Solutions' new indoor locationing platform combines two leading types of connectivity to create a more robust interior communication platform for retailers.

MPact for mobile marketing marries low energy Bluetooth (BLE) and Wi-Fi to create a new and more robust technology that lets shoppers receive in-store messages. "If you just go to market leveraging BLE it only goes so far, and if you use Wi-Fi without BLE, there is a very high cost to implementation," explained Barry Issberner, marketing director for enterprise solutions at Motorola Solutions. "So we combined the capabilities of Wi-Fi and BLE in one package."

The solution enables shoppers to opt-in and receive customized offers and personal assistance via a Bluetooth Smart-triggered loyalty app and access Wi-Fi to locate products in store, read reviews, compare prices and look up information.

MPact allows retailers to locate smartphone users within 4 feet of accuracy, and requires shoppers to opt-in. It works with both iOS and Android devices, can be integrated into retailers' existing mobile apps, works with multiple vendor tags. Server software leaves a breadcrumb path through the store and charts shopper activity.

MPact offers three levels of location services: presence, zone and position using both Wi-Fi and BLE to pinpoint the exact location of customer devices in relation to the merchandise they are looking at. The combination of the two technologies gives insight and visibility to a shopper's journey in the store while eliminating the need for retailers to deploy, integrate and manage two separate technologies, according to Motorola.

By offering both BLE and Wi-Fi, MPact can develop and navigate indoor maps, measure and analyze foot traffic, deliver hyper-local services and track assets. ATLS's suite of components includes battery-aware RF tags, a client software development kit, an installation application and a cloud-based server software with floor plan views and maintenance capabilities.

Motorola collaborated with Aisle411, Digby, Phunware and Swirl. The latter's beacon marketing platform allows retailers to deliver relevant mobile content and experiences.

BLE is quickly pulling ahead of NFC as retail's favorite in-store location technology, thanks in part to growing use of Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iBeacons. Most recently Walgreens launched a test of iBeacons in 10 Duane Reade stores in Manhattan.

For more:
-See this Motorola Solutions press release

Related stories:
Walgreens launches iBeacon pilot
Mobile payments, in-store tracking among key trends to watch
Shoppers reject in-store tracking by retailers
Apple rolls out iBeacon sensors in all U.S. retail stores
Safeway, Giant Eagle beam up iBeacon to 150 stores

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