Beacons can be used to identify items and people. Unlike Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), their long range and additional capabilities allows for real time locating systems (RTLS) and sensing of movement (accelerometer), temperature, humidity, air pressure, light, switch/magnetism (hall effect), proximity, smoke, gas, water leak, heart rate and fall detection. Mesh beacons talk to one another to provide these capabilities over large areas. Bluetooth technologies are making sensors ubiquitous, particularly in scenarios that previously weren't technically possible or financially viable.
Automate the auditing of the location of assets, components or even people. The resultant data can be used to enhance productivity, reduce loss and improve customer service. Some industries use the data for regulatory compliance or to audit client service levels.
Automatically captured asset data is more accurate than human form-filled data leading to greater quality of data and fewer customer problems due to missing items and 'human' errors. The additional, accurate data gathering provides better visibility for management leading to decisions based on data rather than gut instinct.
In industry, beacons are part of what's called the 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR) which is the use of technology to make production more efficient and hence your company more competitive. Beacons also provide easy entry into the Internet of Things (IoT) where sensing drives other business processes.
In retail and hospitality, beacons are used for location-based triggering in iOS and Android apps that leads to increased consumer engagement.
Uses aren't limited to commercial sectors. For example, we have hospitals using hundreds of our beacons to monitor the elderly, schools using beacons to record attendance and the police using beacons to record officer patrols.
A side-affect of producing new data from beacons is that it can be used to feed into new data science and AI machine learning techniques. New insights from data are used to classify, detect and predict in new ways that provide competitive advantage and in some cases create new intellectual property that becomes a new product in itself.
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