MLB iBeacons to check fans in when they enter stadiums, push notifications throughout the game

MLB At the Ballpark

Two weeks ago it was reported that iBeacons were being installed in the stadiums of the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres, but with that trial installation out of the way, the MLB is expanding to 20 of their 30 stadiums. Engadget got the low-down on the installation job in AT&T Park, the home of the San Francisco Giants, where Giants CIO Bill Schlough revealed that the installation process for putting in 19 iBeacons at fan entrances into the stadium took just one day.

The iBeacons will be used to check fans in when they walk through the gate, though they'll need (1) a device running iOS 7, (2) Bluetooth turned on, and (3) the MLB At the Ballpark app running. The check-in process will enable the teams to target notifications at only fans who are in the stadium, though Schlough said that "We don't want to turn this into some sort of spam engine." The MLB's setting rules for how those notifications can be used, and the app allows users to opt-out of the automatic iBeacon check-ins and notifications.

This relatively soft launch of iBeacons for the MLB — just as an entry-exit monitor and not offering more precise intra-ballpark location-targeted messaging — is likely just the start of iBeacons in major events. We can imagine all sorts of ways a more comprehensive iBeacon roll-out could be used, but we'll ask you instead: how do you want the MLB and other sports organizations (and everybody else, for that matter) to start implementing iBeacons?

Source: Engadget

Derek Kessler

Managing Editor of Mobile Nations, Army musician, armchair pundit, and professional ranter.

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There are 3 comments. Add yours.

Gus2259 says:

I think iBeacons could be used to do things like mapping locations for seating, restrooms and concessions. They could identify concession specials like beer and a hot dog for $ X and the location available as well as complete menu and pricing for each stand. It would be nice to get some idea of the waiting lines at rest rooms or concessions. As for shopping within the stadium it would be nice if you could enter a item you're looking for such as team logo on iPhone cases and if it's available you would get the location and pricing. Many stadiums have pictures, statues and memorabilia of past players. That would be something iBeacons could be used to enhance.

lungho says:

Sending push notifications throughout the game sounds like a perfect idea. Instead of keeping your head up and being aware, you stand more of a chance of getting beaned, and possibly seriously injured, by the many balls fouled into the crowed by the batsman.

Blue BoomPony says:

When did advertisers become more powerful than the sociopaths that run the world?