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In recent years, the global demand for accurate and reliable location services has been steadily increasing. Although GPS systems have revolutionized the field, their limitations become apparent when entering buildings. In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of indoor positioning, and consider the key technologies and tools that help its implementation in a company's infrastructure.

What indoor positioning is and how it works

An indoor positioning system (IPS) is a modern system for determining the location of objects indoors. It enables you to track people, equipment, vehicles, and expensive assets and control their movements in real-time. Unlike GPS, which is used primarily outdoors, indoor positioning works effectively indoors. It allows you to calculate the coordinates of objects with an accuracy of mere inches, depending on the technology you choose.

The system relies on radio frequency technologies, ultrasonic waves, or magnetic fields that interact with equipment in the buildings. Implementation involves the use of beacons, tags, and similar sensors, installed in buildings or on monitored objects. These devices transmit identifier-embedded signals at a specific frequency, which are then captured by dedicated receivers. Finally, the processed data is delivered to mobile applications on users' smartphones or tablets.

Indoor positioning technologies tackle several key challenges simultaneously. They facilitate the search for people, equipment, or assets within buildings, enable route creation, and allow for monitoring of their movements for work control and analytics. This is particularly valuable for large buildings and complexes with multiple floors, passages, and structures. Implementing the system simplifies operations and offers numerous advantages to these facilities, such as:

  • allowing you to optimize the movement of employees, workplaces, and facilities;
  • improving the quality of customer service;
  • increasing the safety of employees, visitors, and equipment;
  • reducing the time spent searching for lost objects;
  • preventing asset theft;
  • providing efficient navigation throughout the building.

Technologies for implementing indoor positioning and RTLS

Many technologies can be used to implement an indoor positioning solution. The most common ones include:

  • Bluetooth® Low Energy works using iBeacon beacons that allow you to calculate the location of assets or people with an accuracy of 3 ft. Sensors don’t consume much energy, so operating the infrastructure doesn’t require special costs.
  • UWB is the most accurate wireless technology and features extensive signals. The accuracy of determining the location of objects with its help can be up to 12 inches, which makes it possible to use UWB in inventory management or the control of production of raw materials.
  • Wi-Fi determines location using Wi-Fi points based on RSSI and MAC addresses. It can work based on existing infrastructure and identifies objects with an accuracy of 9-12 ft.
  • Wi-Fi RTT is a new technology that works by measuring the distance to nearby routers. It performs positioning with an accuracy of less than 3 ft and is used based on existing infrastructure.

Use cases and benefits of implementing indoor positioning

Indoor positioning technologies are optimally suited for almost any field. They are successfully used in retail, manufacturing, warehouses, culture, education, and healthcare.


The main tasks that positioning systems solve in manufacturing include increasing safety and optimizing workflows. The platform can be used for the following purposes:

  • tracking the movement of special equipment with determining downtime;
  • controlling working hours while identifying lateness and early departures of employees;
  • searching for lost equipment;
  • constructing routes for moving equipment;
  • managing evacuation in case of emergency.

Using indoor positioning at industrial enterprises makes it possible to prevent emergencies, reduce company costs, and decrease the time of production processes. Using the indoor positioning system, you can make staff work more efficiently and increase productivity.

Logistics and warehouses

Indoor positioning helps you track inventory locations and speed up order picking. The high level of precision that modern technology provides plays an important role in the ever-changing warehouse environment and allows for the optimization of any process. Thanks to the system, you can control the movements of forklifts, search for product items, and adjust employees' daily tasks.


Hospitals and clinics utilize positioning systems to monitor equipment and patients. With this technology, medical instruments can be easily located within the clinic premises, preventing the wandering of patients with cognitive impairments and facilitating the monitoring of visitor flow. The platform enables you to create routes to treatment rooms and doctors' offices and optimizes staff day-to-day operations.

Implementing this technology within the clinic's infrastructure leads to a measurable increase in patient satisfaction with medical services.


The systems are successfully used in large educational institutions with many classrooms and campuses. Their main features are as follows:

  • planning routes around the university;
  • tracking the location of assets, such as stands, laptops, projectors, etc.;
  • detecting issues related to visitor safety;
  • conveying useful information to users - for example, library opening hours or dates of any events.

When implementing the system into the infrastructure, you can ensure the safety of people, simplify event planning, and increase the comfort of teachers and students. The system allows the college to be positioned as an advanced educational institution that keeps up with the technology trends.

Culture and entertainment

Indoor positioning systems play a fundamental role in enhancing the visitor experience at museums. By leveraging the system, visitors can seamlessly locate exhibits of interest, receive real-time directions to specific rooms, and access valuable information about ongoing museum events. Furthermore, indoor positioning has demonstrated its success at various events such as concerts, exhibitions, and conferences. Its implementation facilitates intuitive navigation for visitors, streamlines event management, and boosts profitability by unlocking a new marketing channel.

Bottom line

Indoor positioning technologies serve as a powerful tool for enhancing and streamlining business operations across diverse industries. Their adoption unlocks new opportunities for businesses seeking fast and reliable solutions based on real-time data. The systems are readily adaptable to the specific needs of an organization, empowering companies to optimize their indoor operations.

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