The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center introduced a new app today that leapfrogs ahead of the standard museum audio tour.
Using this free app, developed by KS Technologies, visitors with an iOS mobile device can enjoy video and multi-media presentations about art in the galleries without having to punch in location numbers.
That’s because the app listens for iBeacon devices installed throughout the museum, developed by KS Technologies and manufactured in Colorado Springs. KST’s beacon devices are powered by ultra low-power wireless hardware from Nordic Semiconductor.
The new iBeacon technology used in the Fine Arts Center App, currently free through Apple’s App Store, is being used in only a handful of arts institutions worldwide.
“We’re tremendously excited about how the technology enhances the visitor’s experience,” says FAC President and CEO David Dahlin. “Art institutions like ours are finding that it’s not enough to hang art on the walls. In order to stay relevant, we need to make each visit a memorable experience. People today desire to interact and to have depth of context. This new app is amazing and will really change the way that people experience an exhibition and interact with the art.”
The new app also has hidden advantages internally. By tracking foot traffic patterns in the museum, the app can be used like a heat map online, showing how visitors are actually using the institution, where they’re going and where they’re not going.
“Potentially, this has implications for how we install future shows and even which pieces we keep on display and which go to our archives,” says Blake Milteer, the FAC’s museum director and chief curator.
For KS Technologies, the app represents a triumph of collaboration and technology.
“We’re so proud to partner with the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center in creating this new app and installing our beacons here,” said Bob Kressin, President of KS Technologies. “We see beacons as a disruptive technology, having many practical applications such as navigating indoor spaces, tracking assets and creating experiences like we have here at the FAC.”