Radius Networks Developer Blog

Radius Networks Launches Curbside Service

Washington, DC (PRWEB) 16 May 2018 Permalink

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Radius Networks launches Curbside Service, a new product within the Radius Networks Customer Location Platform, designed to automate and streamline the curbside experience for customers, staff, and delivery drivers. With this innovative technology, an entire parking lot can be transformed into serviceable spaces for food delivery.

The easily-installed system leverages Radius Networks’ proprietary wireless location system and ordering apps on the customer’s mobile device to determine the location of a customer within the parking lot. To perfectly time the food readiness with the arrival of the customer, the Radius Networks system triggers the restaurant staff when the customer is within a certain radius of the restaurant, upon entrance to the property, and when they have settled in a parking spot. Food is then brought out fast and fresh to the exact location of the customer.

“In the past we have designated specific curbside/pick-up parking spots, but it consumes prime parking spots, is confusing for the customers, and limits the number of customers and delivery drivers that can use the system at one time,” said District Taco CEO Osiris Hoil. “By turning our parking lot into a serviceable area, we see an increase in repeat customers and substantially less lines and crowding in-store during peak times of the day.”

The Radius Networks Customer Location Platform is currently installed in more than 6,000 locations worldwide, a footprint that is expected to double in the next year. Restaurants, casinos, hotels, and other retail and hospitality venues leverage the product to improve the customer and staff experience, increase order throughput, capture insightful customer analytics, and boost per customer and overall store revenue. Curbside Service is offered as an expansion to the Radius Networks Customer Location Platform, which includes capabilities for indoor and outdoor table service, robust location-dependent order routing, drive-thru pickup, and proximity engagement.

“Our Table Service customers are loving the benefits of our location-aware technology and are eager to expand this outside,” said Radius Networks Chief Strategy Officer Dan Estrada. “With the increasing demand for innovation in drive-thru, curbside, and pick-up counters, Curbside Service gives customers a convenient, comfortable, and speedy experience when on-the-go.”

About Radius Networks: Radius Networks helps companies locate and engage their customers, and is the leading provider of proximity technology solutions used by sports and entertainment venues, major retailers, restaurant chains, and mobile app developers. The Radius Networks solutions help businesses improve the customer experience, further understand behaviors, and drive incremental revenue.

Contact: To learn more about Curbside Service, visit radiusnetworks.com or contact hello(at)radiusnetworks(dot)com.

Starting with iOS 11, the behavior of enabling and disabling Bluetooth and Wifi via Control Center changed. This behavior is described and justified in this Apple Support note. Using the Control Center to disable Bluetooth (as opposed to turning it off completely) has some interesting (and perhaps unexpected) effects on beacon ranging, beacon region monitoring, and advertising as a beacon from an iPhone.

The Swift code that demonstrates the behavior described in this article can be found here.

Setup

To test this new behavior in iOS 11, I setup a UIViewController which is also a CLLocationManagerDelegate, a CBPeripheralManagerDelegate, and a CBCentralManagerDelegate. Under normal circumstances (with Bluetooth on and with location authorization set to .authorizedAlways), when my app starts up, the following values are reported:

centralManagerDidUpdateState(_:) –> .poweredOn

locationManager(_:didChangeAuthorization:) –> .authorizedAlways

Disabling Bluetooth in the Control Panel

With the app running, I go to the Control Panel and disable Bluetooth by tapping on the Bluetooth icon. The icon now has a white background.

Upon returning to my app, I now see that centralManagerDidUpdateState(_:) has reported .poweredOff.

Next, I try to start monitoring a CLBeaconRegion and I get the following error via locationManager(_:monitoringDidFailFor:withError:):

The operation couldn't be completed. (kCLErrorDomain error 5.)

That being said, when I now turn on a beacon inside the CLBeaconRegion I tried to monitor, I now get a call to locationManager(_:didEnterRegion:) for this region! Turning off the same beacon results in a call to locationManager(_:didExitRegion:). I am also able to start ranging beacons in the region and receive callbacks to locationManager(_:didRangeBeacons:in:) including my beacon.

Finally, let’s try advertising as a beacon from my iPhone. Upon doing so, the callback to peripheralManagerDidUpdateState(_:) indicates .poweredOff. Yet the callback to peripheralManagerDidStartAdvertising(_:error:) indicates no error, and the beacon advertisement is confirmed to be successful.

Disabling Bluetooth in Settings

Now let’s go into Settings and turn Bluetooth off.

Looking at the Control Panel we see the Bluetooth icon has a gray background and a slash through it:

Now when I start monitoring the beacon region, I get the same error I got when Bluetooth was disabled:

The operation couldn't be completed. (kCLErrorDomain error 5.)

However, after turning on my beacon, I do not see a callback to locationManager(_:didEnterRegion:).

Attempting to range beacons in the region results in a callback to locationManager(_:rangingBeaconsDidFailFor:withError:) with the error:

The operation couldn't be completed. (kCLErrorDomain error 16.)

Finally, trying to advertise as a beacon from my iPhone results in a callback to peripheralManagerDidStartAdvertising(_:error:) without an error, but also without actually advertising.

What Have We Learned?

  1. “Turning off” Bluetooth in the Control Panel causes the state of the CBCentralManager and CBPeripheralManager to return .poweredOff. However, in this state, you can still monitor for a beacon region, range beacons, and advertise as a Bluetooth peripheral.

  2. Actually turning off Bluetooth via Settings also causes the state of the CBCentralManager and CBPeripheralManager to return .poweredOff. In this state, you cannot monitor for a beacon region, range beacons, or advertise as a Bluetooth peripheral.

What is the Bottom Line?

The bottom line is that if the state of your CBCentralManager and/or CBPeripheralManager is .poweredOff, you don’t know if you truly cannot conduct Bluetooth-related operations unless you try. Apple should really give us a different state for the case where Bluetooth is “disabled” via the Control Panel but not actually “powered off.”

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Display Kit, the digital out-of-home display solution from Radius Networks, is perfect for tons of reasons. The power and simplicity of Chrome OS as the backbone, the convenience and control of the online dashboard, and the flexibility of all the different supported content types are some of the obvious arguments for using Display Kit as your digital signage platform. But there are a number of other more subtle ways that Display Kit is better than the competition. In this post I’ll highlight my three favorite Display Kit features and how they make it the best digital signage product around.

1. DoubleClick Integration

Google’s DoubleClick ad platform powers much of the online advertising ecosystem and reaches millions of users every day. It’s a powerful and proven way to reach potential customers online and connect with them. Display Kit has built-in integration with DoubleClick, so you can use the same platform to deliver traditional online ads as well as ads in the so called “out-of-home” world. All you have to do it set up an “ad unit” in DoubleClick and then add the corresponding information to Display Kit. Once Display Kit is hooked up, you can manage your orders, creatives, etc. in DoubleClick and the Display Kit app will connect to DoubleClick and retrieve the content in real-time. Display Kit is the first and only digital signage platform compatible with DoubleClick, so if you want to break out of the browser and reach people in the real world, it’s the only way to go.

2. Seamless Bluetooth Low Energy Beacon Support

One of the shortfalls of billboards, banners, and digital signage screens is that it’s difficult to connect to passers-by and engage with them with your content. That’s different now with the existence of smartphones and the advent of Bluetooth proximity beacons. With Display Kit, you can attach a BLE beacon signal to any piece of content. When that content is shown on screen, the Display Kit player sends out that beacon signal which can then be detected by nearby smartphones. That means you can extend the outreach of your content and you can provide more context and value to the content on screen. For example, you can advertise your app or product on screen and nearby users can receive the related information directly on their phones instead of having to type in a URL or scan a clumsy QR code. All you have to do is input your beacon identifiers in the Display Kit dashboard, they can be set uniquely for each piece of content or you can specify a single beacon for each player that will always be transmitted. The Display Kit player app can broadcast multiple beacon transmissions simultaneously, so each piece of content on screen can have its own beacon associated with it. Additionally, Display Kit supports all major beacon standards, so you can set up an advertisement with any beacon use case using all the industry standard beacon formats including Eddystone URL, Eddystone UID, iBeacon, and AltBeacon.

3. Easily Create Multi-Frame Content

Most digital signage screens consist of one piece of content that fills up the entire screen, whether it’s a video, image, or something else. With Display Kit, you can create a custom multi-frame display that shows as many pieces of content you want in the layout you choose. After you specify the size and position of each frame, you can add your own CSS styles to further customize the frame however you like (e.g., add a border, give the frame a circular shape). When building your display, each frame you add gets its own playlist that it cycles through independently of the other frames. With different content templates like image, video, and ticker you can build pretty much any kind of display you can think of. Once you have the perfect display layout, you can easily duplicate it to re-use the settings with different content or to tweak things for a different use case.

Next Steps

If any or all of these features sound better than your existing digital signage solution or you’re just getting started and you want a powerful and easy way to deploy and manage an array of digital signage screens, check out our Display Kit info page or contact us to get started.

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As we continue to meet and speak with countries that are interested in our Table Service / Table Locator system, it’s spreading like wildfire! Currently, we are installing our Table Service solution in 26 different countries including: United Kingdom, Australia, Guatemala, Singapore, Belgium, New Zealand, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Hong Kong, Switzerland, Poland, Hungary, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Brazil and beyond! Each market now pairs their deployments of our technology in various restaurants around the world with a Market Partner who can support them with local, in real-time help for installation or troubleshooting.

One area that most markets take advantage of is our capability to provide local customization. Each market has the capability to localize many areas of our kit configuration. One area of customization is our Table Locators where markets can create their own design to add local languages, QR codes for market, etc. Another area to note is not only is our solution consistent globally, our implementation to locally configure our Table Service equipment to each country is something we think closely upon. Each component is configured to each country which is no easy feat! We’ve heard nothing but positive feedback from markets on our cutting-edge capabilities of localization but our commitment to understanding cultural requirements and taking action to ensure our technology fits each Market’s needs.

table service

Radius Networks takes pride and ownership that we create everything ourselves – whether that’s the software design and infrastructure installed within our technology, to the software that’s in the physical hardware. It’s all created in house by our Team. While our International Table service solution Ecosystem continues to grow, we are joining forces with a multitude of market-wide IT Partners who need to access the same information we see to service the Table Service solution. After many hours of critical thinking, our Engineering Team created a solution that would provide a dedicated portal for IT Partners to gain access to their market systems. It was no easy task as this has never been done. After a great bit of validation, testing, and trial/error, Radius Networks is now excited to provide our IT Partners a dedicated and custom portal to remotely access market-segmented restaurants that have our Table Service solution.

Through our International Train the Trainer Program for the Table Service installations worldwide, we’re closely working with various market-selected partners to learn, train and certify the installation, maintenance and deployment of our Table Service technology. Not only do we help establish a new way for customers to experience the future while eating a good meal, each country will have local, educated and exceptional partners to support installing this technology at a rapid rate! We send a Radius Networks Engineer to each country and with a team of Engineers, walk them through every detail and facet that is necessary and we’ve only heard great news!

Radius Networks and ISM Connect, global leaders in proximity solutions and digital engagement at large venues, have partnered to launch a first-of-its-kind programmatic advertising platform for the digital out-of-home (DOOH) market. The market is built upon the idea of reimagining the advertising experience with a focus on highly relevant and targeted content through data driven business intelligence, and this partnership brings the companies to the forefront of that innovation.

“With access to millions of consumers today and growing, ISM Connect’s digital networks are a perfect match for Radius Networks’ industry-leading digital signage and proximity solutions that improve the consumer journey, generate revenue for large venues, and provide advertisers with the measurable ROI that is required in today’s marketing environment,” said ISM Connect CEO Kent Heyman.

ISM Connect offers a 360° engagement platform that uses a network of intelligent LG-MRI outdoor and indoor display screens and a powerful analytics engine to track and analyze the interactions, behaviors and demographics of their audience. By adding the Radius Networks Display Kit™ software to its platform, online advertisers who have been limited to accessing users through a browser will now be able to access targeted audiences at sporting events, tradeshows, multi-use retail locations, and everywhere an ISM Connect digital network exists.

Jeff Baskin, EVP of Global Partnerships at Radius Networks adds, “By bringing together the technology of Radius Networks and ISM Connect, we have developed a true end-to-end solution for world-class brands requiring a simple, effective, and measurable way to reach their targeted demographics. We are confident that this partnership will lead to a vibrant and growing digital out-of-home ad sales space by opening it up to a whole new audience of ad buyers.”

Radius Networks is the leading provider of mobile proximity solutions used by major retailers, restaurant chains, and sports venues. This partnership gives these existing customers access to innovative and interactive experiences that revolutionize how they engage and gain insights from some of the most attended events in the country.

As a marquee customer, NASCAR runs on advertising and is always searching for new ways to optimize their efforts. Through constant innovation, that advertising has grown from branding of cars, to billboards around the track, to today where at 23 of the tracks around the US they have the ISM Connect outdoor display network engaging fans. The large format screens display branded content, which then gets pushed to mobile devices to drive conversions and visits through incentivized gamification. This not only enables a channel for advertisers typically not seen at NASCAR, but also provides deeper insights about fans than NASCAR had been able to achieve in the past.

To bring our innovative out-of-home smart digital displays to your company, contact us to get started.