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Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

Is RFID an acceptable technology for indoor navigation purposes?

About RFID Positioning Technology

Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a technology that has been around since the 1980’s. If you are familiar with contactless payment which allows you to pay for an item by the tap of your credit or debit card then you’ve used a form of RFID.

RFID is widely used for electronic identification and RFID positioning. RFID offers substantial advantages for businesses allowing automatic inventory and tracking on the supply chain. This technology plays a key role in pervasive networks and services.

How RFID Positioning Works

There are three types of RFID tags. Active, passive, and semi passive. They are comprised of a microchip or integrated circuit (IC), an antenna, and a protective material layer that holds all the components together.

For navigation purposes, passive RFID tags are used because they don’t require an external power source making it easier to implement around a facility. Passive tags are placed around a physical space, like a course, to map out a navigation path.

The Entities

A RFID tracking system is composed of three different entities, RFID tags, readers, and servers. RFID utilizes Received signal strength (RSS), Angle of arrival (AOA), Time of arrival (TOA) and Time distance of arrival (TDOA) although when used indoors the above methods, excluding RSS, may fail to provide accurate positioning location due to interference with the line of site to the RFID reader.

RFID is a popular option for indoor positioning because of its simplicity, low cost, and effective range.

Challenges with RFID positioning

Challenges users face:

  • Requires additional hardware (RFID tags)
  • Only useful for spot detection
  • Short-range of < 1m for positioning
  • Installation requires extensive planning

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Mapsted’s IPS Eliminates The Need For External Hardware.

  • All-in-one IPS
    The technical limitations of other indoor navigation technologies can't deliver what Mapsted's patented core technology does - a highly accurate and cost- effective stand-alone indoor positioning system.
  • Eliminate extra costs
    Other indoor positioning systems require the use of expensive external hardware and costly maintenance.
  • No external hardware
    Instead of relying on external hardware for location- based needs, Mapsted technology pulls from a huge variety of data sources to create a powerful and accurate indoor positioning system.
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