Viennese company customLBS, a member of the Frequentis Start-up Centre, is currently developing a technology called indoo.rs, which is capable of locating people inside buildings such as shopping centres or airports via smartphone or tablet computer.
The technology was recently showcased by customLBS and Frequentis at a live demonstration for public safety organisations at this years’ British APCO in Manchester (UK) last month (16-17 April 2012).
Frequentis employees located each other with their mobile phones – all equipped with indoo.rs software - and navigated through the trade fair premises while their position inside the building was displayed on iPads.
'Indoor navigation usually requires the acquisition of hardware such as Bluetooth transmitters or RFID tags. In addition to these hardware costs, specially trained personnel are required to install and maintain the hardware, which in turn may lead to very high costs,' said Bernd Gruber, cofounder of customLBS, explaining the disadvantages of conventional solutions.
The indoo.rs technology offers a solution to this problem by using already existing local WLAN networks, including password-protected and encrypted networks, as no login is required.
According to Gruber, future usage scenarios will primarily include public safety organisations: police, fire brigade and emergency medical services will be able to locate themselves and their colleagues inside buildings. customLBS clearly sees itself as technology provider and makes indoo.rs available for developers, app distributors or system providers.
The principle is clear, according to Gruber: 'indoo.rs can easily be integrated in newly developed and already existing applications. The solution opens up endless possibilities. In any case, customer benefits stay the same: for the first time they are able to orient themselves without difficulty inside buildings,' he said.