Aplix Shows Off 0.8mm-thick Beacon Module

Mar 6, 2014
Tomohisa Takei, Nikkei Electronics
The 0.8mm-thick Beacon module developed by Aplix
The 0.8mm-thick Beacon module developed by Aplix
[Click to enlarge image]
Chips are mounted on a flexible substrate. The number of battery modules (right) is changed depending on the desired operating time. (photo courtesy of Aplix)
Chips are mounted on a flexible substrate. The number of battery modules (right) is changed depending on the desired operating time. (photo courtesy of Aplix)
[Click to enlarge image]

Aplix IP Holdings Corp developed a 0.8mm-thick Beacon module and exhibited it at Retail Tech Japan 2014, a trade show that runs from March 4 to 7, 2014, in Tokyo.

The company expects that the module will be attached to the reverse sides of posters including advertising posters hung in trains, etc.

The thinness was realized by mounting chips and passive components on a flexible substrate, employing a slim battery module, etc. Even an antenna is formed on the flexible substrate.

"The Beacon module operates for about a week only with one battery module," Aplix said.

The company plans to supply the new module to advertising production companies, advertising agencies, etc as well as license its basic technology to printing companies.

Beacon is a system that transmits ID in the surrounding area by using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), which is the low-power consumption standard of the Bluetooth wireless technology. It began to attract attention after Apple Inc added the "iBeacon" capability to iOS 7, an operating system for mobile devices.

iBeacon is the name of a system that receives Beacon signals with iOS in a background process and notifies an application software of the reception. It was established by Apple.