Bluetooth® Tracking Inside Buildings
Last update 23 JAN 2023
Source - MUTI
Bluetooth® location based services is widely used in many sectors of the economy, tracking assets inside buildings being one of its key directions. By implementing Bluetooth low energy location tracking devices into the company’s infrastructure, it is possible to monitor objects in real-time and get detailed analytics of movements for optimizing the company’s performance.
Bluetooth® Low Energy refers to wireless technology meant for reduced power consumption. Bluetooth® LE-based devices are used for data transmission over short distances and are a perfect fit for asset monitoring at enterprises. Statistically speaking, the Bluetooth® LE market has been growing relentlessly. According to the Industry Arc forecasts, by 2026, it will grow by an average of 19.68% per year and reach $16.7 billion in volume.
Asset Tracking with Bluetooth® LE: The Key Features
Bluetooth® Low Energy asset tracking provides lower power consumption and affordable implementation cost compared to regular Bluetooth®. The main features of Bluetooth® Low Energy include:
- applying specifically for short-range communications;
- different devices interacting with each other;
- compatibility with almost any smartphone or tablet;
- suitability for low bandwidth applications and sensors;
- making devices “smarter” and easier to use.
Bluetooth® LOCATION Tracking Components
Bluetooth® LE is a wireless technology developed for reducing energy consumption in comparison with usual Bluetooth®. Working in the same range as the usual Bluetooth®, the system allows tracking objects in real-time and is ideal for cases when the battery life is more essential than the data flow rate. Typically, Bluetooth® location accuracy is below 5 meters.
Bluetooth® LE tags
The introduction of the Bluetooth® position tracking system requires special Bluetooth® LE beacons that are attached to the equipment and send out signals at pre-defined intervals. Structurally, they are tiny battery-powered sensors capable of transmitting data over short distances.
Benefits of Using Bluetooth® Beacons for Asset Location Tracking
Beacons are considered some of the most effective indoor tracking devices. Using them is a good idea for several reasons, including the following:
- beacons are light and small, which makes it easy to put them on any assets, including tools and equipment;
- the sensors have a wider range than RFID tags, so they work more efficiently in large areas or open spaces;
- beacons are powered by small batteries, making them suitable for portable tracking;
- beacons don’t require additional reading equipment - they send out signals that are easily recognized by Bluetooth® LE devices;
- multiple devices can read Bluetooth® Low Energy IDs at the same time;
- beacons do not require scanning and provide real-time, quick, and continuous asset recognition.
Being implemented into the system, the platform receives data from readers, processes it, and delivers ready-made information to users. Our company makes use of its Navigine Tracking platform.
A location-aware platform for Digital Transformation of Enterprises.More
Key opportunities of Navigine Tracking platform:
- The system allows tracking the movement of equipment and getting analytical data in real-time. The platform builds interactive maps, shows various access zones, and saves the history of object movements.
- Using the platform, one can send push notifications to the staff and adjust their daily tasks. This approach ensures direct contact between the employees and the management, which boosts business process development.
- The system has a function of moving object positioning. When beacons are installed on cars or working vehicles, one can always be aware of their location and build optimal routes.
- The platform carefully gathers data on movements, including the stay time at different zones. It allows minimizing the number of emergencies and optimizing the performance of the company.
Navigine Tracking is easily adjusted to the needs of every client. It can be used in any sphere, such as industry, shopping centers, hospitals, medical institutions.
Peculiarities and Advantages of Tracking Assets and Moving Objects Using Bluetooth® LE
Nowadays many enterprises need an effective and simple way of tracking assets at minimum costs. Bluetooth® localization and tracking helps to solve this problem and provides a detailed analysis of the movements of tracked objects.
Main advantages and characteristics of the system:
- Low cost and high profitability of the invested money. Beacons don’t cost a lot so the system does not require high implementation costs.
- Universality. Antennas and Bluetooth® LE beacons can be integrated with the existing systems and networks, which significantly saves money. Beacons and antennas ensure tracking in real-time, both inside and outside.
- High data rate. The system can transmit data two times faster than other technologies, which reduces the labor costs of the managers involved.
- Low energy consumption. Bluetooth® LE beacons consume minimum energy. They work from еру batteries whose service life is up to 5 years.
- Wide coverage range. The Bluetooth® position tracking technology ensures a four times wider coverage range for tracking location in comparison with earlier technologies. Thanks to this, less equipment and fewer implementation costs are necessary for organizing tracking.
- High security. The signals, emitted by the beacons, are sent via mobile networks. They pass through the central gateway, which makes data transfer safer.
Spheres of Bluetooth® Tracking Application
Bluetooth® object tracking can be used in various spheres, from industry to agriculture and healthcare. Let’s consider some most common scenarios of the system application.
Tracking assets in healthcare make it possible to monitor effectively medical equipment and consumables. Doctors and employees can easily find the necessary equipment, medicine, medical supplies and manage them carefully. This saves employees from routine work and helps to save time that they can dedicate to patient care. Control and monitoring are carried out in real-time with RTLS in hospitals, which simplifies the use of assets and makes them more profitable.
Asset tracking is particularly relevant in manufacturing and production where it is essential to control goods on the way from production premises to loading zones. Equipment tracking systems allow tracking any type of movement. It helps to monitor stocked items, cars, working vehicles. Moreover, it allows avoiding downtime and getting some advantages:
- Logistics process optimization;
- Improving occupational safety;
- Minimizing the number of emergencies;
- Reducing downtime costs.
Logistics and Warehouses
The managers of warehouses can get exact information on asset location in their premises. The system provides interactive maps, allows adjusting and getting any analytical reports. Its application in warehouses improves asset security and helps to reduce time on searching the necessary stall, forklift, or other equipment.
Learn more about forklift tracking software.
In offices, technology is necessary for notifying in various situations. It is particularly relevant in large office buildings where the flows of people are big. Using this technology, companies can coordinate staff performance and adjust current tasks. The obtained information can be useful for optimizing staff productivity and increasing office efficiency.
To understand how Bluetooth® asset tracking works, let's take a look at a case study from Navigine for an American warehousing and logistics company. During the beginning of the partnership, the company in question faced multiple issues such as difficulties in finding products, lack of digital mapping of the warehouses, and controlling the movement of assets.
To solve these problems, we installed beacons by MOKOSmart and developed a Bluetooth® Low Energy location tracking platform. The software provided data on the location of products in the warehouse and the movement of equipment in real time. As a result, the company was able to increase productivity by 5%, impressively optimize warehouse space, and significantly reduce the amount of compensation for accidents.
If your company is interested in Bluetooth® location tracking, Navigine is ready to help with integrating it into your infrastructure. We offer our customers effective Navigine Tracking software, which provides a set of features for controlling the movement of objects. The Bluetooth® Low Energy asset tracking system uses AI and provides higher positioning accuracy through additional data collection from wearable devices. Our experts provide the necessary technical support, as well as installation instructions, and help with settings according to your company’s specific needs.
Navigine specializes in developing tools that can perform exact object tracking using Bluetooth®. We offer platforms for different branches of the economy that help to optimize the work of the company and increase the efficiency of business processes.
How accurate is Bluetooth® tracking?
Bluetooth® location tracking is more accurate than GPS or Wi-Fi. With it, you can monitor objects in real time and calculate their location with an accuracy of 3 ft.
How does Bluetooth® LE asset tracking work?
Asset tracking is based on special beacons that are placed indoors and send out signals at a certain cadence. As soon as a person with a smartphone enters the service area of the beacon, it instantly determines their location and sends relevant data to the reader. After processing on the server, the data then reaches the user's mobile device.
Why is Bluetooth® Low Energy better for tracking than other technologies?
Bluetooth® Low Energy provides high tracking accuracy and allows you to control the movement of people or assets in real time. The beacons are compact and don’t require high energy costs. Their batteries last for up to 5 years.