17 Feb 2023 16 min


Last update 17 FEB 2023

Popular Asset Tracking Technologies: Which One is Best for Your Business

Navigine - Popular Asset Tracking Technologies: Which One is Best for Your Business
17 Feb 2023 16 min


Last update 17 FEB 2023

Img Source - Agris Bobrovs

Indoor asset tracking is the process of keeping track of important assets of a company. With it, you can determine the location of valuable equipment or vehicles, as well as monitor their movement in real time. In 2021, the asset tracking market was valued at $17.75 billion. Asset tracking technologies are projected to gain even more popularity going forward, with an estimated CAGR of 13.91% through 2027.

Asset tracking can be used in many industries. However, choosing a technology is not an easy task, since there are several technologies with their special features, advantages, and disadvantages. In this article, we will look at the most popular asset-monitoring technologies and tell you what nuances you need to consider when making a choice.

Things to consider when choosing technology for indoor asset tracking

Asset tracking technology can be selected based on the characteristics of the company and project. There is no one-size-fits-all solution, so the choice is based on the requirements of a particular business. Before choosing a technology, you need to answer a few important questions?

  • What kind of location accuracy is needed?
  • How many objects will you need to track?
  • What is the value of the monitored assets?
  • What is the budget for the project?

The answers to these questions will help you find the most suitable asset tracking technology.

Popular Asset Tracking Technologies

When choosing the right asset tracking technology, it’s important to pick a solution that will be compatible with existing systems in the company and will allow you to connect all the assets, regardless of their location. Below, you can see the list of the most popular options, as well as their respective pros and cons.

Bluetooth® Low Energy

Bluetooth® LE is one of the most popular technologies, providing object tracking accuracy of up to 3 ft. The system operates based on special sensors (known as beacons) that send out signals at a certain cadence. When the asset is within the range of these signals, the beacon positions it in real time.


  • affordable cost of beacons;
  • low energy consumption;
  • high accuracy;
  • wide reading range of 100 to 270 ft;
  • compatibility with existing infrastructure.


  • interference which can lead to losing data points;
  • poor performance in rooms with many reflective or metallic surfaces.
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Wi-Fi technology can be used based on existing access points. Its accuracy is a bit lower (up to 10 ft) than some other methods, and the tags consume quite a lot of energy, but the system is often used when inexpensive and easy implementation is required.


  • low implementation costs;
  • the wide scanning range of 200-330 ft;
  • the ability to work with existing Wi-Fi networks.


  • not scalable;
  • high energy costs;
  • insufficient accuracy.

UWB (Ultra Wide Band)

UWB is the most accurate location-based asset tracking technology to date. It allows you to transfer impressive amounts of data over short distances and determines the location of objects with an accuracy of up to 12 in. UWB tags are active sensors and require a power source, but their batteries consume very little energy, so they can last up to 10 years.


  • high tracking accuracy;
  • increased energy efficiency;
  • resistance to multipath interference.


  • high implementation cost;
  • needing wires to synchronize time and data;
  • signal strength restrictions.


Global Positioning System (GPS) is mainly used outdoors as satellite signals have trouble penetrating the walls of buildings. But if necessary, it can be successfully used in open spaces, such as parking lots or factories.


  • little to no interference;
  • unlimited possibilities for scaling;
  • stable sensors.


  • high energy consumption;
  • outdoor tracking only;
  • needing a line of sight of at least 4 satellites;
  • low accuracy of 10 to 33 ft.


RFID is one of the oldest location technologies. Despite many new ones emerging in recent years, it remains in demand on the market and works through electromagnetic readers and tags (active or passive). This asset tracking solution can operate in different frequency ranges, which makes it universal in use.


  • label compactness;
  • inexpensive tags;
  • long equipment life.


  • expensive readers;
  • low accuracy;
  • inability to provide location data in real time;
  • easy interception of wireless signals.

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Wireless Mesh

Wireless Mesh is widely used in industrial scenarios and is also applied when organizing smart homes. This indoor asset tracking technology can simultaneously support up to 65 thousand devices, so it’s also a great option for asset tracking in manufacturing. Its implementation requires hardware and tags that are compatible with the network protocol.


  • affordable tags;
  • working at several frequencies at once;
  • low energy consumption.


  • short reading range;
  • requires direct visibility of objects.


Barcode is the first technology developed specifically for asset monitoring. It’s still used in tracking, but it requires a clear alignment of the bars in a straight line for correct scanning by readers, which complicates using it in large factories and warehouses.


  • affordability;
  • efficiency in use;
  • long tag life.


  • inability to scan if the label is damaged;
  • unavailability of real-time tracking.

QR codes

The QR code was created in 1994 for the Japanese automotive industry. It refers to an extended version of the barcode and can be used not only for tracking but also for organizing marketing campaigns, and indoor navigation.


  • wider scope of use in comparison to the barcode;
  • simple settings;
  • inexpensive labels.


  • inability to obtain information if the QR code is damaged;
  • inability to provide location data in real time.


The NFC system allows two devices to communicate with each other when placed at a distance of up to 1.5 in. Equipment that supports the technology (mobile phones, laptops, computers) can easily read NFC tags and, based on this, perform asset monitoring.


  • short set-up time;
  • affordable tags.


  • small reading range;
  • not suitable for monitoring objects in 2D and 3D space.

Which technology is better?

According to Navigine experts, the choice of technology depends on the desired level of positioning accuracy. Therefore, there is no one-size-fits-all or one best technology for any project, and everything must be selected individually.

Navigine develops tracking tools based on Bluetooth® Low Energy and other technologies (such as Wi-Fi, UWB, Wireless Mesh, RFID, etc.). We are ready to provide effective software that will make it easy to implement any indoor asset tracking solution into your enterprise infrastructure. For more detailed information, fill out the form on our website or book a free demo on Zoom. You can also check how Navigine Tracking works by checking out Online Demo, operating in a real-time.

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Each asset is assigned a specific number that allows you to track objects. For example, the equipment can be labeled with a barcode or tagged with a unique ID. When a label is scanned or an asset enters the beacon's range, the system will provide detailed location information.

All the methods we mentioned in this article have their pros and cons. For example, GPS is great for tracking assets outdoors, but it doesn’t work indoors. One of the most popular solutions for indoor asset tracking is currently Bluetooth® LE, but other technologies can also be the best option for your business depending on the location, the desired level of positioning accuracy, etc.