Facebook to test Bluetooth beacons in New York

Facebook has unveiled a new service called Place Tips that works with Bluetooth beacons, WiFi and GPS to show the social network’s iOS app users “useful and relevant” information about the places they visit.

Those who have given the social network permission to access their location on their mobile device will automatically receive Place Tips, without having to actively opt-in to the service. Location services must be enabled for Place Tips to work and the service can be turned on or off from the settings inside the Facebook app.

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Place Tips is to be tested around a number of locations in New York in the “coming weeks,” the company reveals, and Bluetooth beacons will be installed in a “handful of businesses” across the city including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Dominique Ansel Bakery, Strand Book Store, the Burger Joint at Le Parker Meridien Hotel, Brooklyn Bowl, Pianos, the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop and Veselka. The service is also going to be available in locations including Central Park, Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, the Statue of Liberty and JFK Airport through Wi-Fi and GPS.

The company explains;

“Facebook Bluetooth beacons are devices that businesses receive from Facebook. These beacons use Bluetooth technology to send a signal to the Facebook app on your phone to help up show you the right Place Tips”

When you tap on Place Tips, you’ll see a series of cards with info about the place you’re at. If you choose to view Place Tips, you’ll find things like posts and photos your friends have shared with you about that place. You can also see information about the place including posts from its page, popular menu items and upcoming events.

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