Enter the Batthead, the star of a new Kickstarter campaign that wants to make your rechargeable AA batteries much, much smarter. Here’s the concept in a nutshell: they have essentially taken a rechargeable AA battery and crammed a Bluetooth 4.0 radio and an accelerometer into it. You probably see where this is going — thanks to a companion app, users can remotely enable and disable those batteries in a bid to preserve more power for when it’s really needed. Of course, parents can don their troll hats and remotely shut down their kids’ toys from afar using their iOS devices (the Vonkil team says that Android support is in the works too). The accelerometer will add the ability to have devices turn on or off when in a certain position.
With iOS 7 comes a new feature called iBeacon. What iBeacon does is it allows developers to communicate with iOS devices via a low energy Bluetooth signal to provide contextual info based on their immediate surroundings. This means that it would be able communicate deals to shoppers based on which aisle they’re in, for instance, or by letting them even send a payment token from a smartphone, with variable proximity programmable by the retailer, so you could tap to pay. It will be interesting to see how developers will implement this and it could change the shopping experience for good or for worse because like with everything there will be some people that would prefer not get notifications about things that they are in the aisle with or how long they were in a certain aisle.