Bluetooth Proximity Solutions for Asset Management
Asset management and tracking is a key concern for businesses across the globe. Bluetooth technology is the leading provider of proximity solutions for smart buildings and cities. The 2018 Bluetooth Market Update expects their location device penetration to grow 10x by 2022, encouraging them to improve current systems and user experience. Companies like Iottag use Bluetooth location services to enhance their asset tracking devices and smart beacons. Minimal infrastructure, along with almost all technological devices being Bluetooth ready, make Bluetooth location services the best solution for asset, equipment and staff tracking.
Traditionally, Bluetooth used received signal strength (RSSI) measurements to estimate the distance between two connected devices. The most popular proximity solutions are item finding and point of interest (PoI). Approximating the distance between two devices is useful in asset tracking, but it wasn’t completely accurate. Employees still took time locating products or pieces of equipment once in the correct location. RFID technology, which has been used since the twentieth century, was introduced into Bluetooth’s proximity solutions to improve the direction finding capabilities of asset tracking tags and beacons. Now, a signal sent from a Bluetooth tracking tag will show its exact location as well as all loaded data regarding that asset. Iottag uses this technology in their smart beacons and Bluetooth tracking tags to simplify locating practices. Assets are tracked in real-time, so employees and supervisors can find assets immediately.
(PoI) Precision with Bluetooth
Bluetooth’s initial step to improve location services was to introduce PoI information solutions. Small devices, known as beacons, were installed throughout a building, such as a hospital or manufacturing facility. These beacons helped employees determine the distance between two devices and what direction the signal originated from. Once they locate an asset, employees can scan the Bluetooth asset tracking tag and receive all pertinent information pertaining to that particular asset. Iottag’s smart beacons use PoI information solutions help companies, like hospitals and manufacturing facilities, with asset and equipment tracking.
PoI solutions are not limited to healthcare and manufacturing industries. Retailers, museums and airports use Bluetooth beacons to simplify the customer experience. For example, the National Gallery of Victoria uses Bluetooth beacons to help visitors not only locate exhibitions, but access information about each display with an app. Malls and supermarkets use PoI solutions to help shoppers locate desired products as well as all information about said products. This is also important for hospitals. Knowing when a piece of equipment was first used or last serviced could save someone’s life.
Bluetooth’s Sophisticated Indoor Positioning Systems
Unlike RTLS solutions, Bluetooth transmitters or locator beacons are used instead of Bluetooth receivers. These are placed in a fixed location, like Iottag’s smart beacons, and help workers, shoppers or travellers navigate through large facilities. This works in the opposite wat to RTLS solutions. Smart beacons are particularly useful to large companies or hospitals with many assets that need tracking. Employees can install an app, like Iottag’s ATLAS app, onto all mobile devices within the facility. Using the app, mobile devices are able to “listen” for Bluetooth beacons. The app uses trilateration, a more refined form of triangulation, to calculate the exact position of an asset. This is done by using received signal strength, much like RTLS solutions, and the known location of a beacon.
The accuracy of Bluetooth positioning systems depends on multiple factors such as floor plan, building size and the number of beacons installed. Most systems will have an accuracy between 1-10m. Iottag smart beacons have about a 2-5m accuracy range, one of the best on the Australian market. These smart beacons have a battery life of up to 5 years and are completely waterproof. The status of installed beacons can be monitored on Iottag’s API, which easily integrates with established CRM software.
Improving Asset Tracking with Bluetooth’s Proximity Solutions
Bluetooth’s improved proximity solutions will help companies locate their assets faster. Now, more than one device can be tracked Bluetooth tracking tags, like those developed by Iottag, easily attach to movable assets to improve locating practices. Tennis Australia used Iottag’s Bluetooth tracking tags and ATLAS app to monitor all pertinent keys and equipment used by employees. This ensured any item could be located quickly. The innovative dashboard developed by Iottag gives more asset tracking control. Employees could track items in real-time to determine exact locations.
Bluetooth’s new direction finding capabilities have revolutionised asset tracking practices, saving companies and consumers valuable time. Visit iottag.com.au/bluetooth-tracking for more information on their asset tracking solutions or to talk to a consultant about the best solutions for your business.