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UK’s Gatwick Airport now has 2,000 beacons for in-house navigation

Intricate in-house environments for instance, airports and department shops can be a nightmare to find your way around. Although Google is thinking of getting mobile phones with 3D sensors as one prospective fix for places GPS won’t precisely reach, another approach is to kit out an interior with a number of Bluetooth beacons – giving smart phone users located-locked pings to fix onto to figure out exactly where they’re.

The UK’s 2nd busiest air-port, Gatwick airport, has chosen the 2nd approach to power an indoor navigation system it’s launching as a part of a bigger, multi-year transformation program.

It’s finally completed providing its two terminals with about 2,000 battery-powered beacons to make certain that digital map users will get a more precise blue dot as they move around. The beacon system will likewise be utilized to power an augmented reality wayfinding tool – with the intention that mobile users will have the ability to be guided to precise locations within the terminals via on-screen arrows. The beacon system is planned as backing up positioning with +/-3m accuracy.

Gatwick is aiming to integrate indoor positioning into some of its apps, and says it’s in discussions with airlines to make use of it for their own apps and services – giving instance of them being able to send push notifications to warn travellers if they’re running late, or even settle on whether or not to wait or offload luggage so a plane can take off on time.

Retailers and other third parties will likewise be able to utilize the system for proximity detection of potential shoppers and delivery marketing and advertising messages – at a minimum to those who have opted in to receive them.

Gatwick says it will not be obtaining any private data via the beacons but says “generic information on ‘people densities’ in different beacon zones” will be employed to help to improve airport operations – for example, queue measurement, streamlining passenger flows and lessening blockage.

The airport has worked with UK new venture Pointr on the system. Along with developing software and managing the system on an ongoing basis, Pointr is providing an SDK with support for 3D AR wayfinding make it possible for third parties to take advantage of the functionality.

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