In the space of just over five years Bristol-based Mubaloo has become one of the leading firms in its field in the UK. From a standing start it has grown into a business with a £3.5 million turnover, which employs over 50 people. Mubaloo specialises in creating smartphone applications for businesses and was one of the first companies of its kind in the world.
Mark Mason, the businessman behind Mubaloo, is not the kind of person who likes to rest on his laurels. The entrepreneur has launched another innovative product, which he believes will dominate the hi-tech market.
His latest innovation is the formation of a new division of Mubaloo. MiBeacon (see below) is a small Bluetooth-enabled device that sends a signal, which can be picked up by passing smartphones. The idea is to alert the owners of promotions and offers that are in their vicinity. This technology could be beneficial to a wide range of businesses, from shops and bars, to museums and tourist attractions.
Just as when Mason saw the potential for business apps following the launch of the App Store, he realised the opportunity for a technology called beacons. Beacons use a low energy form of Bluetooth, which sends out a signal with a radius of up to 30 meters. If recognised by an installed app, a beacon can trigger the right content, message or app to come up on a smartphone or tablet.
Beacon technology rose to prominence last year when Apple introduced system wide support for its devices to pick interpret signals through its iBeacon technology. So far, it has been used by retailers throughout the US and UK with trials underway with firms such as Tesco, Asda and John Lewis. Mason’s firm is working on a number of trials for the technology at the moment in the transportation, facilities management, leisure, construction and utilities industries.
For Mason’s firm, there has been a huge rise in the number of companies wanting help with strategy around mobility. Apps are only becoming more integrated into the way people live and work.
Mason is looking forward to introducing the technology to the firms clients: “The summer is going to be extremely busy as we help clients to look at their apps and think how they can be enhanced with the new features. As a developer that focuses on building productivity tools that transform business processes. Last year, the focus was on design, this year it is about giving developers the tools they need to create apps that change people’s lives and the way we work.â€
“Last year, the focus was on design, this year it is about giving developers the tools they need to create apps that change people’s lives and the way we work”
Each year brings Mubaloo more opportunities. Last year, using beacons became a viable opportunity thanks to Apple’s new iOS 7. Beacons only work with apps that are designed to listen to specific signals, making the work Mubaloo does integral to successful deployments.
This month, Apple introduced its new iOS 8 operating system that saw a new programming language, Swift, being revealed in addition to over 4,000 new programming tools. Mason concludes: “As a developer that focuses on building productivity tools that transform business processes; TouchID and Widgets will drive new levels of innovation. Last year, the focus was on design, this year it is about giving developers the tools they need to create apps that change peoples lives and the way we work. Apple made their intentions clear for this to take place from the start of the Keynote.â€
See more on how Mubaloo’s MiBeacon works in the video below:
- You might like: Blog: Time management – how to get more from meetings