We have seen all kinds of bluetooth marketing/advertising systems in the last two years. The concept that they used was simple: whenever a device is closeby, push ad matereal into in ruthlessly.

A college group has now taken a different approach. Their display looks at closeby bluetooth devices and stores their data in its internal database. This data is then used to show ads on a screen – each user thus gets to see each ad only once.

In fact, a small-scale test installation is already up and running:
http://www.newscientisttech.com/article.ns?id=dn10065&feedId=online-news_rss20

If you ask me, the main problem here is trackability. The ad display manager can know which Bluetooth device ID was here and when – another step away from anonymity and another reason to disable bluetooth on your PDA….

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3 Responses to “Bluetooth used for ad targeting”

  1. Simular appoach has been launched in a few local chain store and Karaoke bars here in Hong Kong too.

    Ads and coupon are “pushed” to bluetooth enabled phones.

    I personally thinks it is a kind of annoying, never liked the idea of “push” Ads in any form…

    Speaking of Trackability, I think as our daily life goes more and more digital, like usage of credit cards, mobilephones, pre-paid smartcard (used for paying public trasport fare and other small amount payment), I think we just can get away from being traced anyway….

    Saw a funny article awhile ago about someone warns of privacy issue on RFID tag used in packing of products.
    User habits like life cycle of the product or even when and where did the user bought and consume the product (even who did, as Credit or smartcard might be used for payment) can be trace..

    I personally believe that if user are concern about trackability, it is up to their responsibility to look after their foot steps, like prevent bluetooth discovery always on, it is us who left the foot print to be traced afterall..

    :)
    just my 2 cents.

  2. all of our ads are permission only. if ya dont want it ya dont get it. we can track who accepts, what kinda of phone and all of our ads are coded so you dnt keep getting bashed with the same ad

  3. We have recently wired the entire Las Vegas Blvd here in the U.S.A. We have to support that network with print media so people who would like the information being sent will turn their devices to discoverable and/or visible. In the U.S. most people don’t walk around with it on discoverable. Also our network sends what appears as a text message asking the user to optin and if they don;t then the network will not resend to them http://www.bluetoothon.com and then “how it works” to see how we are doing it here in Las Vegas

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