July 25, 2015

Alpacas + iBeacons = AppPacas?

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After conquering shopping malls, stadiums, and Zoos, beacon technology has entered farms, starting with beaconized Alpacas in the Netherlands.


Las Vegas, Nevada, USA and Amsterdam, Netherlands — Visitors to Dutch farm Valleike are discovering animals in a whole new way, thanks to beacons and an iOS app that gives the wooly mammals a digital “voice”. Developed by Amsterdam-based company Van Ons in collaboration with Media599, the app utilizes Tough Beacons to unlock additional content (stories, pictures, videos) based on a visitors’ location and entartain them with an educational game.


“Our goal was to innovate the way of learning about farms by creating a simple tool which can be used even by children. Beacon technology was an obvious choice as it helps us to offer both a hassle-free visit and a full edutainment experience at once.” explained Bas van der Lans, Technical director Van Ons.


“What is new and exciting about this case is that for the first time in history, after making sure it was safe for an animal, a beacon was attached also to one of the farm residents – an Alpaca named Cezar. [watch video]


“We are excited to see such a good implementation of Tough Beacons in the demanding environment that they were designed for – outdoors. With its resilient construction, it can be easily mounted on various surfaces. While we didn’t envision attaching a beacon to an alpaca when we designed the Tough Beacon, we think it’s a great–and surprisingly adorable–showcase of how durable they are in the real world.” said Szymon Niemczura, CEO at


The app can be download for free from App Store and Google Play.


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