Apple's iBeacons and PayPal's Beacons will lead a new era of location aware apps using Bluetooth technology on a micro level (indoor location), including mobile payments. According to Apple, Developers will be able to build really engaging experiences around points of interest that would have been very difficult to do before.
PayPal’s Beacon becomes bona fide entry into indoor location. PayPal will know you’re in a venue and then can do any number of things, including serving highly specific marketing messages or ads inside the store. Beacon unit will cost less than $100 though final pricing hasn’t been determined. Developers and publishers will be able to leverage indoor location and payments through PayPal Beacon. Developers will be able to use the PayPal mobile in-store API to create experiences such as being able to self-checkout on your mobile phone or automatically placing a customer’s usual order as soon as they walk through the door.
iBeacons are the final confirmation that Apple has rejected NFC. Apple with its more than 650 million credit cards on file has finally entered the mobile payments space, granted, right now it's only at Apple stores. Amazon could do something similar too. However, PayPal has an existing POS integration advantage.
Read more in our Indoor Location Services report, here.