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Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 06:16 am PT (09:16 am ET)

Beacondo makes it easier to develop new apps that interact with Apple's iBeacons

Developers looking for a faster way to prototype iBeacon-enabled apps or everyday users who want to experiment with the microlocation technology can now look to Beacondo, a startup working to make iBeacon integration simpler with a new drag-and-drop system.



Beacondo provides a familiar graphical user interface for creating apps and configuring iBeacons, freeing users from writing code. The company says that apps built this way are still compiled from native code, however, meaning that users will not experience any slowdowns and many built-in iOS functions are available.

Users can configure their app to display custom content based on the device's range from a specific iBeacon, scan two- and three-dimensional barcodes — including QR codes — and share content to social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Apps are created using the free Beacondo Designer, and can be previewed with the Beacondo Viewer iOS app.

A wide range of design choices is also available, with users able to add carousels, maps, videos, and audio, among other elements. Beacondo says their platform works well for retail stores, museums, and coffee shops, though any type of business can build apps using it.

Beacondo is free for anyone to use, provided that apps created using the system carry a "Powered by Beacondo" message. Those wishing to remove the message can upgrade to one of two "professional" or "enterprise" plans that enable apps to interact with higher numbers of iBeacons or customize in-app notifications.