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Supermarket Chain Adds Beacons to 45 Stores

Picking up a loaf of bread from the grocery store just got technical. Niemann Foods Inc. piloted a beacon program in eight County Market grocery stores in Springfield, IL, in February 2014. It then made 20 changes to its app based on customer feedback and now is deploying beacons to all 45 of its County Market stores by Q3 2015, says Nathaniel Jones, electronic marketing manager at Niemann Foods. Beacons are small hardware that retailers can place anywhere in a physical store that pinpoint the location of a smartphone with a retailer’s app via Bluetooth Low Energy wireless networking technology, common on all newer smartphones. If a consumer has the retailer’s app on her smartphone, a beacon can send her a push notification with a message relevant to her exact location in the store.

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