Skip to main content

Indoor Location growing and gaining speed

Indoor location is like a snowball rolling down a hill - it just keeps growing and gaining speed.

In our newly updated report, we show that there are over 30 start-up companies in the area, and all the major chip makers are working in the area as well.  That's in addition to active research by all the major mobile companies (Samsung, Google, Microsoft, Apple, Nokia, RIM, Sony Ericsson, Motorola, ...).

In the middle of 2011 Grizzly Analytics observed that almost all the start-up companies in the area were basing their technology on Wi-Fi fingerprinting, and that we were surprised by the lack of start-ups  taking other technical approaches such as motion sensing by sensor integration. We reported lots of research in motion sensing by the major mobile companies, but not start-ups.

Now, less than a year later, our updated report includes nine start-ups working on using sensors to track movement indoors. (See one demo video video here.)   At least eight start-ups are working on signal triangulation or other methods that are more general-purpose than signal fingerprinting. And at least ten are using signal fingerprinting to bring indoor location services to market in malls, airports and other locations near you.

Chip makers and mobile companies are also active in the area. Google has released indoor positioning and Microsoft's Bing features indoor maps.  New chips are handling both radio signal trianguation (using a variety of methods) and motion sensing by sensor integration, aiming to offer indoor location in hardware. Some mobile companies are showing demos of their own (like this one), and others are doing their research behind the scenes.

We expect the acquisitions to start soon.  Will chip makers, who are already researching the area, acquire start-ups with algorithms in the area of motion tracking by sensor integration? Will companies like FourSquare and Facebook acquire start-ups whose technology can identify which store in a mall the user wants to check in to? Will companies like GroupOn acquire start-ups with very general-purpose technology that can identify what stores a user is near? Will Apple & Google acquire companies that will make their indoor mapping more accurate and pervasive?

To understand this new area NOW, check out the newly updated 163-page Grizzly Analytics report, titled Indoor Location Positioning: Research Pipelines, Start-ups and Predictions.  We'll explain the technical approaches, show you what's being researched by major mobile companies and chip makers, the differences between the start-ups in the area, and more.

Popular posts from this blog

Ultra-Wideband Poised to Enter Smartphones

Recent years have seen a constant increase in the speed at which software innovations reach market. One day’s new concept can be the next day’s innovative mobile application, the following day’s ten competing mobile applications, and the day after that’s built-in phone feature.
In hardware, however, innovation tends to go slower. Addition of new hardware chips or components to smartphones, for example, are a constant worry for smartphone manufacturers, who need to be 100% certain that the new innovation won’t in some way hurt the other functions and components of the phone.
Does adding a new chip affect in any way the electrical signals between the other chips? Does a new wireless component affect the radio waves of the core phone or wireless components? Do signals to or from a new antenna hurt the performance of other antennas in the device?
Early cellphones and smartphones often had concerns of this sort. Some early smartphones did not include vibrate-mode because the shaking int…

Intel demos indoor location technology in new Wi-Fi chips at MWC 2015

Intel made several announcements at MWC 2015, including a new chipset for wireless connectivity (Wi-Fi) in mobile devices. This new chipset, the 8270, include in-chip support for indoor location positioning. Below we explain their technology and show a video of it in action. With this announcement, Intel joins Broadcom, Qualcomm and other chip makers in moving broad indoor location positioning into mobile device hardware.

The transition of indoor location positioning into chips is a trend identified in the newest Grizzly Analytics report on Indoor Location Positioning Technologies, released the week before MWC 2015. By moving indoor location positioning from software into hardware, chips such as Intel's enable location positioning to run continuously and universally, without using device CPU, and with less power consumption.

Intel's technology delivers 1-3 meter accuracy, using a technique called multilateration, generating a new location estimate every second. While 1-3 meter …

33 Indoor Location Technologies at Mobile World Congress 2017

The number of companies exhibiting indoor location technologies at the 2017 Mobile World Congress (MWC) skyrocketed to 33!

Before MWC started, we released our Guide to Indoor Location at MWC, with 23 companies:

During the conference we notified our guide recipients of 10 other indoor location exhibitors that we saw. (Sign up here to receive our guide and to be on our mailing list for next year's MWC.)

This is many more indoor location related exhibits that previous years. The area is growing by leaps and bounds! Our recent report on indoor location technologies analyzed and profiled almost 200 companies!

Here are some videos, so you can see the technologies in action, followed by a list of the other indoor location companies that were at MWC.

First up is Philips Lighting, with high-accuracy indoor location positioning based on LED light modulation and visible light communication (VLC) technology:

Next comes Estimote, makers of Bluetooth (BLE) beacons, who introduced self-mapping b…