GCell unveils world’s first indoor solar iBeacon

Newport-based tech manufacturer GCell has announced what it says is the world’s first indoor-powered solar iBeacon.

The G100 is an enterprise grade iBeacon targeted at large-scale deployments, offering a long lifespan, renewable energy supply and a 100-millisecond advertising rate as default.

Beacons are taking the world by storm. There are already 6 million of them being used worldwide, according to proximity marketing directory www.Proxbook.com.

They’re being used in a variety of different contexts and locations, including airports, cinemas, hotels and retail stores. They broadcast Bluetooth signals a smartphone can receive and understand.

As a result of this, it’s possible for brands and venues to communicate with their customers and audiences at a precise location at the time of their visit.

Professor Michael Grätzel, recipient of the 2012 Albert Einstein World Award, said: “I am delighted that GCell have introduced the World’s first indoor solar powered iBeacon.

“GCell continue to lead the way for the use of indoor photovoltaics. I anticipate that this is the first of a series of indoor wireless beaconing and smart sensor devices powered by a renewable energy source.”

Barry Jenkins, business development manager at GCell, said: “We have been patiently watching the iBeacon ecosystem to mature.

“We quickly recognised that battery-life is one of the biggest challenges for iBeacon industry growth. Initially Beacon hardware vendors used small coin cell batteries typically lasting less than a year.

“Each time a beacon requires a replacement battery there is an associated service cost that adds to the total cost of ownership.”