Since a large part of public life takes place in inner cities and enclosed spaces such as shopping malls, office buildings and railroad or subway stations, those are the very places where location-based services are most important. Also for professional applications, for example in warehouses or museums, indoor positioning capability opens up multiple possibilities.
To address this need, Fraunhofer IIS has developed awiloc®, a position determination solution that uses existing wireless networks. The positioning algorithm is not tied to any special transmission technology, it utilizes diverse communication networks, e.g. in the form of wireless LAN, GSM, UMTS or Bluetooth LE. This solution by Fraunhofer IIS makes it possible for mobile devices to independently determine their position in indoor and urban environments based on signal strength measurements. Networks from the IEEE 802.11 family of wireless LAN standards have emerged as prevalent technology. Hence, they are predominantly used as a basis for positioning.
Positions are determined with an accuracy of a few meters. Positioning in communication networks perfectly complements the well established satellite-based Global Positioning System (GPS).
The advantages of awiloc® are:
- Continuous positioning - multi-storey buildings, underground facilities, complete cities
- Privacy-preserving positioning – position calculation on the mobile device
- Totally handset-based solution – no data communication, no central server
- Context-aware – 3D models e.g. for floor identification, room identification
- Provider independent – collect your own reference base, set up exclusive services
Developing the awiloc® technology, utmost attention was paid to data protection law compliance, ensuring the technology’s large-scale and easy employment for locationdependent applications.
A self-contained positioning solution on the mobile device:
- enables new business processes
- optimizes existing processes
- aids pathfinding
- forms a basis for autonomous systems
- facilitates new services
- provides continuous position values
- does not entail costs for provider
- Industry applications (fork-lift positioning, personnel tracking systems)
- Navigation systems (indoor/outdoor)
- Location-based Services (LBS)