The iBeacon is actually a small transmitter that works with Bluetooth Low Energy technology (BLE). It’s Apple’s alternative to Near Field Communication (NFC) that’s being built into more and more smartphones. BLE is available on the latest versions of iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, iPad Mini, Android smartphones and tablets, Windows smartphones and tablets, and BlackBerry smartphones. An important advantage of iBeacons over NFC: the reach is far greater. With NFC, the range is only a few centimeters, with iBeacons it’s 50 meters.