Last year Major League Baseball fans were promised to be able to take advantage of iOS 7′s iBeacon support inside professional baseball stadiums. The technology would be utilized in the MLB.com At The Ballpark app to customize the app’s interface to any given ballpark.
According to a report on Thursday, Major League Baseball will start rolling out thousands of iBeacons in 20 ballparks across the U.S. next week. Boston, Milwaukee, San Diego, LA Dodgers, and San Francisco are among the teams that will have iBeacons installed.
The MLB.com At The Ballpark app is expected to direct fans to their seats or points of interest such as concessions stands. Additionally, the app was planned to automatically present a ticket upon entering the gate. MLB is looking to eliminate time wasters like waiting in line at the will call window, and it doesn’t want fans wandering the ballpark looking for their seats.
In addition to these opportunities, iBeacons will allow clubs to send a push notification to fans thanking them for their visit to the ballpark and directing them to a nearby concession stand for a free hot dog.
MLB is also working to offer reliable Wi-Fi to all thirty ballparks, as well as working with all major carriers to improve cellular reception inside the facilities. Currently, a lot of fans suffer from using data or making calls, during exciting moments in the game. iBeacons can currently trigger any content, including videos, photos, text but with the reliable Wi-Fi it would be a significant improvement to the fan experience.
Those who want to get started with MLB iBeacons should download free At The Ballpark app to their iPhone and then sign up for a free MLB.com account to get started. Users are required to install At The Ballpark and choose the option allowing to receive messages from iBeacons.
Apple’s iBeacon technology uses the Bluetooth Low Energy protocol to provide two-way wireless communication at varying distances.