Fathom, part of Rx Networks, has introduced its suite beacon location products and management platfrom, first seen at Mobile World Congress 2016, to the wider public. Fathom is a hardware and cloud-based software system designed to redefine the beacon and IoT space. It is designed to support a wide range of industry applications from retail to healthcare and addresses the challenges of managing large-scale beacon deployments.
Fathom is a new Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) proximity gateway device with the intelligence to locate and monitor beacon and BLE devices in its vicinity. BLE devices, commonly referred to as beacons, are typically used to trigger an event on a mobile device, such as sending a notification to a user when they are within a beacon's range.
The Fathom Hub transforms stand-alone BLE beacons into a managed proximity ecosystem, reporting on the location and status of all BLE beacons in the coverage area. To achieve this, Fathom has skipped a few generations in the evolution of technology in this sphere. Rather than being bolted onto existing networking technology, Fathom is purpose engineered to accurately locate and position BLE devices.
Guylain Roy-MacHabée, president and CEO, Rx Networks, said: "After three years of research and development, we're excited to emerge from beta and bring Fathom to market. Early customer feedback is positive and affirms that Fathom solves a very real and very painful problem for companies that have deployed and are managing beacons. Remote identification and monitoring are key challenges in scaling beacon deployments across the Enterprise as is maintaining location-context integrity of those deployments."
Fathom will help businesses across a variety of industries cut costs, streamline operations, improve customer service and support targeted marketing campaigns. The insights derived from Fathom data will improve customer engagement, resource management and real-time analytics.
Through the Fathom Control cloud-based management interface businesses can remotely manage their proximity networks, providing real-time visualisations of beacon deployments and access configuration and monitoring tools to track assets and set alerts if beacons move or stop responding.
Additionally, Fathom renders valuable location data, derived from other nearby BLE devices, such as wearables and smartphones. Just a few examples of Fathom's use include hospitals (who will be able to quickly locate essential equipment and staff), retail (marketing teams can identify popular aisles in retail environments to understand how consumers are interacting with a bricks and mortar store).
Other sectors include manufacturing (locating equipment and materials throughout the process), and advertising (digital signs that change content based on who is watching).
The company reports that businesses are already moving to adopt Fathom's integrated system, and are excited about the potential Fathom's insights and customer engagement capabilities will change the way they work.
"Blacksburg Transit has been evaluating the Fathom system for the past few months and is very pleased with the results to date," said Tim Witten, information technology services manager at Blacksburg Transit.
ABI Research is predicting that BLE shipments will exceed 400 million by 2021, meaning holistic beacon management will become more critical for operational efficiency. Fathom's unique design is beacon agnostic allowing it to locate, manage and monitor most BLE beacons, regardless of manufacturer. This means organizations that have already invested in beacon technology do not need to replace their deployment and can preserve existing infrastructure investments.
Fathom is also developing integrations with BLE market leaders to enable the discovery and management of beacons that use proprietary communication standards. These industry partnerships will enable analytics and application integration through Fathom's extensible data and management Application Programming Interfaces (APIs).
See also: Fathom Hub transforms BLE beacons into managed IoT proximity networks