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Indoor tracking denotes the localization of persons and objects within buildings. This indoor localization is thus a technical challenge because GPS does not work reliably within interior spaces. That’s why we use, depending on the application, WiFi or BLE localization (accuracy under 5 meters) using Locator Nodes and Locator Beacons, special hardware developed by us. Ultra-wide bands allow super-precise indoor tracking of people and objects. RFID enables selective object identification. All solutions presented here also work seamlessly under the open sky in case the plant grounds are not uniformly covered by a roof.
Indoor tracking is normally implemented as a server-based application. No app is required because a back channel to the object to be located is not necessary in most cases. GFI Locator Nodes are used here. They can localize all Wi-Fi devices (smartphones, Wi-Fi tags and wearable Wi-Fi transmitters) as well as Bluetooth Low Energy beacons (e.g. available as an armband or wafer-thin sticker), Ultra-wideband tags and RFID tags.
In some cases, client-based positioning is used, e.g. when person tracking is part of an employee app. The position is then determined directly on the user’s smartphone and regularly sent to a server. An app is required. A feedback channel is also available, for example, for sending push notifications.
The intervals at which Bluetooth beacons, Wi-Fi or UWB tags send signals significantly affect the density and thus also the reliability of the acquired position data. A short interval which sends a signal every 20 to 350 milliseconds for positioning captures a person’s or asset’s path more precisely than a longer interval of 500 milliseconds or more. Short intervals are useful for quickly moving objects (e.g. vehicles) or high precision requirements. With long transmission intervals, the actual route cannot always be traced precisely, but battery life is significantly longer when using battery-powered tags/beacons.
GFI offers various web-based tools for managing the digital map and checking the status of beacons, for example. The technology is also available as a plugin for integration into existing systems (e.g. apps). An SDK (Software Developer Kit) is available for the Android and iOS mobile operating systems and as an HTML5 plugin.
The indoor tracking of persons can make sense in several situations. On the one hand, it plays a major role regarding safety, i.e. for patients in high-risk categories and for the evacuation of employees from large company premises. On the other, it helps with the optimization of work processes, e.g. when a sales employee needs to be found at an extensive trade show stand or when optimizing walking routes is the goal.
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The indoor tracking of objects is in great demand, above all, in industry. It is often necessary here to determine the current location of work equipment or goods. Our systems always come with a software package that enables various applications. They are based on a detailed digital map that can be displayed on all (even mobile) end user devices. Here the current position of the object to be located can always be seen.