Alpwise & Renesas Implementing Connectivity with Bluetooth Low Energy and Beacon Technologies

Renesas has partnered with Alpwise to provide flexible, low-power Bluetooth Smart solutions for the ultra-low power RX and RL78 microcontroller families.


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

Intricate in-house environments including airports and departmental stores is usually a nightmare to find your way around. Even though Google is eyeing phones with 3D detectors as one prospective solution for places GPS won’t accurately reach, another approach is to kit out an interior with a whole lot of Bluetooth beacons – giving mobile users located-locked pings to fix onto to recognise exactly where they are.

The UK’s second busiest air-port, Gatwick airport, has opted for the latter method to power an indoor navigation system it’s launching as a section of a bigger, multi-year transformation program.

It’s right now completed kitting out its two terminals with around 2,000 battery-powered beacons to make sure digital map users will get a more precise blue dot as they stroll around. The beacon system will also be employed to power an augmented reality wayfinding tool – to ensure that mobile users will be able to be guided to specific locations within the terminals via on-screen arrows. The beacon system is scheduled as backing up positioning with +/-3m accuracy.

Gatwick is preparing to integrate indoor positioning into some of its applications, and says it’s in discussions with airlines to take advantage of it for their own applications and services – giving instance of them having the capability to send push notifications to inform travellers if they’re running late, or even consider whether or not to wait or offload luggage so a plane can take off punctually.

Merchants and other third parties will also be able to use the system for proximity detection of potential customers and push marketing and advertising messages – at least to those who’ve signed up to receive them.

Gatwick says it won’t be gathering any private data using the beacons but says “generic information on ‘people densities’ in different beacon zones” will be utilized to help to improve airport operations – just like queue measurement, streamlining passenger flows and cutting down blockage.

The airport has worked with UK new venture Pointr on the system. As well as developing software and managing the system on an ongoing basis, Pointr offers an SDK with support for 3D AR wayfinding as a way for third parties to access the functionality.

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