Existing technologies work fairly well when helping consumers extract value from their locations… except when they are indoors.
Imagine walking into a store, picking up a pair of shoes, and seeing specs for the kicks appear on a TV next to the display. Or imagine standing in front of an airport departures screen and seeing your flight appear and then a map displaying the best route to your gate. These use cases were supposed to be the killer app for beacons and, finally, these dreams are being realized.
Estimote, a beacon company whose small, wireless sensors and accompanying software provide indoor location technology to some of the largest retailers as well as 65 percent of the Fortune 100, has now closed on $10.7 million in Series A funding.
Estimote announced a partnership with Knoll to bring its iBeacon platform to the office space planning company.
Virgin Atlantic plans to work with the beacon startup Estimote to send customized messages and offers to its passengers’ phones as they travel through London Heathrow airport.
Estimote, a Y Combinator graduate and a FundersClub portfolio company that makes wireless sensors — or beacons — that can be used to transmit information to nearby smartphones in environments such as retail shops, has snagged a $3.1 million seed round.
Manufacturing and logistics giant PCH International alongside hardware incubator Highway1 have announced that Estimote, a tool for helping retail spaces interact with customers, has been chosen for Best Hardware Startup at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2013.
Estimote, a Y Combinator graduate and Hardware Alley exhibitor here at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2013, was able to talk about something today that it’s never been able to before: how its product will work with Apple’s new iBeacon tech in iOS 7. iBeacons allow developers to communicate with iOS devices via Bluetooth Low Energy, in order to provide them with contextual info based on their immediate surroundings.
Just as the wheels of time continue to turn, the 49 new startups out of Y Combinator continue to churn. Batch One is now behind us, and a new group of startups are taking the stage. As per usual, TechCrunch is here to bring you complete coverage of each of these companies, ranging from a “hearing aid 2.0″ to a “Netflix for fashion” to “credit cards for old people.” [Update: For our favorites from across all three batches, check out TechCrunch's top 8 startups from Demo Day]
Estimote’s first prototype looked like a parrot. They designed it to sit in stores and count the humans entering and leaving the location and could register their paths through the aisles and even added analytics based on sex and purchasing patterns. In all, if you were a store owner, that weird little parrot, eternally connected to the Internet, was a brand new way of doing business.