ABI Research’s latest quarterly market data report on location technologies indicates that 2014 is shaping up to be a breakout year for indoor location technologies in retail environments.
The reason? Early adopters are entering the final year of the three-year technology adoption cycle, shifting from trials to full-scale deployments.
Another critical driver, however, is the boom in BLE/iBeacons, which are creating a wave of second generation start-ups in this space that will help to drive new growth and use cases across all major verticals.
All told, this is expected to result in over 30,000 indoor location installations in 2014.
“We can clearly see major grocery and pharmacy chains really pushing towards this technology,” says ABI Senior analyst Patrick Connolly. “These are very competitive verticals, which can benefit significantly from identifying and targeting loyal customers. Both already have large loyalty and advertising/offers deals in place and from a practical point of view, in-store items can be difficult to find. All of this makes indoor location a perfect fit.”
It’s interesting to note how other verticals are looking at using the technology. In the fast food space, where indoor location was not originally envisioned as having major success, a small percentage improvement in queue lengths can translate into millions of dollars. A number of chains are now trialing the technology purely for that purpose.