If you’re an iPhone carrying Dodger’s fan and you use the MLB.com’s At the Ballpark app, your experience at the stadium is about to get an upgrade. That’s because the Dodger stadium has just got a hardware upgrade.
On Feb. 14, 2014, Major League Baseball Advanced Media, also known as MLBAM or BAM, announced it had finished installing Apple iBeacon technology at Petco Park and Dodger Stadium. This tech will eventually be installed in more than 20 Major League Baseball ballparks. The iBeacon technology will go into use on the Opening Day of the 2014 season. 65 iBeacons were installed throughout Petco Park and Dodger Stadium.
If you’re unfamiliar with iBeacon tech, it’s an extension of the iOS Location Services which came with the iOS 7 update. This tech enables your iOS device to alert apps when you approach or leave a location with an iBeacon. In addition to monitoring location, an app can estimate your proximity to an iBeacon (for example, a display or checkout counter in a retail store). An iBeacon uses a Bluetooth low energy signal, which iOS devices detect, to determine your location.
The MLB.com At The Ballpark app, is meant to personalize your visit to a ballpark with mobile check-in, social media, offers, rewards and exclusive content. But with this iBeacon tech, it will become much more personalized. How much so? You’ll have to wait until March to find out. The update with the new iBeacon-based features will be released for the Opening Day of the 2014 season.
Of course you may want to watch your baseball game in peace without being nagged with offers or feeling like your being followed. If you don’t want to have the full digital experience that the ballpark is offering, you can disable the Location Services for the app (Tap Settings > Privacy > Location Services). If you really want to fall off the ballpark’s radar, turn Bluetooth off on your iPhone and enjoy the game in peace.